by Joel Parmer (@cup_of_joel)
The first thing I read about Baltimore’s Kenny Husband was a bio page describing him as a “4th-dimensional Surfin’ Cowboy.” Oddly enough, this description really isn’t too far off from the vibes that his singer-songwriter-fueled tunes emit. Under the moniker Mr. Husband, he sings, plays guitar, and provides comedic support. Kenny’s upcoming fourth album, Kenny Husband & The Husky Section, isn’t due out for a couple of months, but already there’s no shortage of comedic overtones. Mr. Husband currently has the following message to listeners posted on their Bandcamp pre-order page for the new record:
“Dearest Listener and Good friend,
These are some of my husky bois. They have been getting their exercise. They have switched to snackwells-brand diet cookies and skim milk. They have gone shopping for a brand new outfit and will look very handsome for grandma on Easter Sunday. I love them as only a mother could love them but hope that you too will love them in all their big-boned earnestness. It is with friendship and wonderment in my heart that I invite you, dear listener, to take a stroll through the Husky Section.
Your Brother In the eternal light of Indie Rawk,
But in all seriousness, Mr. Husband’s brand of mellow, lo-fi, pop rock won’t simply go in one ear and out the other. There’s a memorable quality to the group, as their music riddles itself with a fantastic combination of thoughtfulness and humor. Mr. Husband’s new song “Stone Cold Killer” begins with a cheeky tambourine pattern and folk-heavy acoustic guitar that together make up the substratum of the verse and beyond. Once Kenny’s vocals enter, the doubled-up singing begins to collide with heart-searching lyrics. The result is not too far off from a bedroom pop reiteration of a Father John Misty verse.
However, as the verse turnaround and choruses hit, vocal harmonies begin to shatter preconceived notions and comparisons to other pop-bordering folk figures. There’s no need for expansive drum parts or constant guitar noodling in “Stone Cold Killer.” The trio of parts retrofit themselves in a series of relaxed repetitions, although, the final stretch of outro does resolve well by breaking up a simple “A/B” songwriting style with a lively, phased-out acoustic guitar solo. “Stone Cold Killer” effectively scratches the surface of what’s soon to come from Mr. Husband. Described by Kenny himself: “it smells like Marlboro lights and Mt. Dew and feels like my 90s redneck youth in essence.”
Mr. Husband’s new album Kenny Husband & The Husky Section will be out May 3 via Yellow K Records.