Kingsley Flood is one of those bands that matter as they address race, identity and class issues in a serious way in their music. It’s music with something important to say, like the Clash, all backed with with a hard-charging folk-inflected rock sound. Frontman Naseem Khuri is a Palestinian American, which gives him a strong vantage point to examine these issues and his wife is a speechwriter for President Obama. The band used a year-long PledgeMusic campaign to fund their latest album, Another Other, releasing today. That allowed the group the time and space to create the best music of their career as they labored long and hard to get things just as they wanted them on Another Other.
Khuri says, “this album flowed from this experience I kept having as a kid—I’d want to leave the confines of my nice suburb and venture into Boston, and some adult—parent, teacher, etc.—would warn me about going past this one particular bridge. It took me a while. Years later I would spend many drunken nights sleeping on a friend’s porch in that neighborhood to learn that “it’s not safe there” meant “they’re not like us”.
“I wanted to tell that story, in the context of my own. I was always a bit confused: on one hand, I came from a nice suburb and had privilege. On the other, I was Palestinian-American and felt like an ‘other’ that I was warned about (yes, even by my parents). It took this album to figure out that tension. And writing an album was cheaper than therapy.
“I haven’t really written like this before, in such a confessional way. Yes, I’ve always tackled pretty miserable topics like poverty and class—I’m working on the whole ‘love’ thing—but I’ve told other people’s stories. Here I wanted to be a little selfish and narcissistic, maybe in a nod to this election year…”