Track Review

Track Review: Dracula // King Castle

The brainchild of multi-instrumentalist Chris Holden, King Castle is a merging of modern-day funk and hip-hop – think Bruno Mars meets The Streets. While ‘Dracula’ may be Chris’s debut track as a King Castle, this is by no means his first taste of the music industry. Previously supporting Mungo Jerry, Top Loader, Faithless, The Pigeon Detectives and many more, Chris Holden has gained a reputation for engaging melodies and energetic performances. With his new moniker (only a few months old), Chris finds himself featured on several radio stations and notable publications as King Castle.

Inspired by Easy Life, Jamie T, Plan B and Rex Orange County, King Castle is a refreshing addition to a stagnating pop scene. Recorded during 2020 at his home studio (also known as his bedroom), ‘Dracula’ is the result of lockdown inspiration. Working with producer Luke Burywood, Chris has “created a sound that we are finally happy with and exited to share with everyone”.

When I hear the name ‘Dracula’ I immediately think of Christopher Lee in all his austere glory as Dracula; however, I doubt this is the image Chris Holden wants to get across in his debut single. Instead of using a literal use of the character, Chris uses the blood-sucking vampire as an analogy for a toxic relationship.

Oddly enough, the infectious and upbeat tune has a buoyancy belying the provocative lyricism. It is this juxtaposition of depth and lightheartedness that makes ‘Dracula’ very interesting. Sweet as honey vocals effortlessly meld with a charming melody, but the personal narrative and tenderness of Chris’s dulcet tones make it quite heart-wrenching.

“‘Dracula’ is based on a modern love story between two individuals that are dragging each other down. The name Dracula is an analogy for someone sucking the life out of you and bleeding you dry. I wrote this song not only to vent my own emotions at the time having experienced a narcissistic relationship, but to help others find comfort in the fact they are not struggling alone… Hopefully, this will kick some people into action to make the tough decisions required to begin living a better life for themselves by removing their Dracula.” – King Castle on ‘Dracula’

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