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King Isis Sloughs Off Pieces of the Self on New EP “shed”


Staff member
Dec 14, 2023
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Nearly a year after King Isis released their debut scales the Oakland-born artist issues its raw and revelatory sequel with their shed EP. Coinciding with the release was the Los Angeles date of their tour with Mehro at El Rey Theatre — though if you missed it you still have a chance to see them perform at House of Blues Voodoo Room in San Diego on March 24th.

With a brooding wave of heavy riffs the EP’s opening track “POISON” locks the collection’s entire soundscape in the tenacious recognition of one’s corruption — the root of which is revealed in later songs to be everything from toxic lovers to the venomous thoughts of complete strangers.

“MAKE IT UP” finds them crushed against the unbearable weight of holding up a relationship that feels dispiritingly one-sided. “I don’t wanna wade through everything I’ve watered down,” she laments atop a surge of scorched guitars. “I don’t wanna make you hold my hand through every drought.” The track frames one of the EP’s essential themes: finding unabashed power in the fearful frustration that comes with shedding memories and people obstructing you from growth.

In “333” and “MONKI” she presents two sides of her relationship with spirituality and religion. The former unfolds as a rapt introspection that yearns for sublimely bittersweet synchronicity — “I stretch my arms to reach the sun / Breathe in destroy my lungs / I will exist in dissonance” they resolve with steadfast determination — but the latter taps into a time when King Isis found themselves trapped by the ignorance of that gathered around the Bible study groups they attended with their mother.

“My mom and I have a great relationship, but there was a time in my childhood when I’d join her at her Bible study and hear people equate being gay with mental illness,” they explained. “It damaged me and made it hard to accept myself.”

For its final track “NVR RLLY” shed saves its most visceral reckoning for last. Blasted by a formidable onslaught of drums and ecstatic rock cacophony King Isis gives a vociferous voice to long-simmering retribution that’s reached a volcanic boiling point. “And I know you never loved me back / And now you wanna go and judge me, relax,” she howls caustically. “Your empty promises and trust me’s, attack / and now you wanna go and fuck me, you’re / trash and I know you never really love me back.”

Across each of the five tracks found within shed coils a brutalizing rebirth coarsely textured by their eviscerating lyricism and ferocious grunge sonics. With its release, King Isis reaffirms her position as a deftly adaptive and enrapturing artist whose eventual debut LP is going to take the entire world by storm.

most anticipated tours of 2024 concerts

Words: Steven Ward

shed is available now on all streaming platforms. Catch King Isis live at House of Blues Voodoo Room in San Diego on Sunday, March 24th.

Visit King Isis on their Bandcamp and Instagram to stay updated on new releases and tour announcements.

Listen to shed the new EP from King Isis below!

King Isis Tour

3/24 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues Voodoo Room
3/25 – Phoenix, AZ – The Rebel Lounge


King Isis

March 21st, 2024
No Matter/Dirty Hit

3. 333

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