Poet, novelist and English Literature teacher Roger Robinson is an accomplished wordsmith. Trinidad born Roger was performing spoken word in London in the early nineties and being an adventurous soul, branched out to start performing poetry with bands hed meet. Techno Animal, Flytronix, The Bugz, Attica Blues and Speeka were some of the bands lucky enough to have words by Roger and his warm voice on their records.

Roger revealed to the world around about then that he was also an exceptional vocalist and songwriter with a distinct and evocative sound. Teaming up with Rob Mac from Speeka, Roger released his debut album Illclectica in 2004, showcasing his versatility and influences and resulting in a wonderful moody, richly textured body of work.

Roger said of the album “I wanted to make music that reflected my eclectic musical tastes: folk soul hip-hop reggae. I wanted to write songs inspired by every one from Tom Waits to De la Soul, from Leadbelly to Curtis Mayfield.. The album is a hand print of my aural and personal experience.”

Excellent reviews ensued, DJ Magazine wrote: The duo skilfully balance the art of metaphor and storytelling with a soundtrack that draws on hip hop and simultaneously tailors it to create more relevant moods. Neatly avoiding the perennial problems that can accompany such projects- self-consciousness, pretension, weak music - Illclectica is powerful in its humility and rich in soul.

Then along came Kevin Martin aka The Bug looking for vocalists for his 2008 experimental dancehall album London Zoo. Together Roger and Kevin recorded the spooky and cavernous sounding You and Me. This partnership worked exceptionally well so the pair decided to embark on a whole new project along the lines of You and Me and call it King Midas Sound bringing in another vocalist Kiki Hitomi.

Their album released in 2009 on Kode 9s esteemed Hyperdub label sounded like nothing that was around at the time (or since). Kevin Martins meticulous dubstep-age production skills and compositions referencing dancehall and lovers rock were of astounding quality and Rogers musing melancholy lyrics and soulful melodies, combined with a commanding yet strangely sweet delivery added depth, soulfulness and a distinct coherent personality to the album.

Rave reviews followed: While hailing from a similarly melancholy, downbeat place as the most dubbed-out Massive Attack cuts, it is as eerie as a skanking skeleton. Roger Robinsons vocals are possessed with a supernatural sweetness, and the beat uncoils slowly, like a hungry python – The Guardian

King Midas Sound started touring tentatively but this year is really putting their energies into the rougher heavy sound of their live shows. A remix album is happening with a stellar line-up of musical luminaries including Flying Lotus, Daedalus, Nite Jewel, Gang Gang Dance, Gonja Sufi, Shackleton and Darkstar. Most definitely a big thumbs up from the music community then!

New material is being recorded so watch this space!



Roger Robinson by Westbury Music