Show Review: Kaki King Premieres Multimedia 'The Neck is the Bridge to the Body'

by J. Johannah Ridley
Posted Mar 12, 2014 at 12:39am

Let’s just say I walked into King’s concert even-keeled, and I left vulnerable and in need of a gentle celebratory hug.

I know that’s wild but it’s true. This show is amazing!

In a sold out hall at BRIC House in Brooklyn, amongst strangers and in the dark, Kaki King makes you feel like she’s playing for you and you alone.

She’s a dynamo guitar player. Scratching, strumming and beating—she lets every inch of the guitar not only tell a story musically, but now you can see the story, too.

More than a concert of King’s incredible new music, her innovative spirit wows again as she experiments with projection technology. Collaborating with Glowing Pictures to turn an all-white guitar of plastic resin into a sensory projector, she gives the instrument a life-like dimension you shouldn’t miss. The guitar’s entire surface is like a video monitor.

For the first time ever we can watch someone perform on guitar and have the instrument display a real-time response. In this show, King makes the guitar as much of a crowd-draw as she is. Don’t believe me? Check out King’s Kick Starter page where fans watched a short video of the guitar and then nearly doubled her campaign request of $25,000.

Yup. There was a sensational buzz right from the start and the show doesn’t disappoint. Professional and serious about her craft, King stepped out on stage, dressed in white from head-to-toe and silently took her place on a velvet bench behind the stationary guitar.

That’s right. The guitar sits propped between two rods, fixed in place for the whole show. It’s intriguing to say the least that someone could ever play the guitar like that. She sat quietly regal and the crowd silenced. We were ready. She was ready. Game on.

To watch her work was a thing of beauty. Every song pulled you with its own unique immersive quality. A pro at crafting instrumental musical works; she took me on a musical journey. There were mellow acoustic numbers filled with warm ambient spaces and then tactile friction scratching and tapping sections.

The set was truly diverse. She creates melodic textures fit for textbooks…she could teach a thing or two about experimentation. Adults and children of all ages were enthralled as she seamlessly switched from groovy wah wah pedal, to gritty psychedelic rock, to some sort of speed fretting.

My eyes couldn’t keep up with how fast her fingers were flying! Even with all the detail I’m sharing, I’m giving nothing away. There’s so much to this show. I haven’t even told you about the huge movie screen that sits behind King. The on-screen images interplay with the guitar’s surface as if in dialogue. It’s dramatic and emotional and like I said, I almost hugged a stranger by the end.

The two packed shows she performed on March 6 were premiere viewings. As of now, there aren’t any additional concert dates posted. But don’t fear! King spoke of tour dates in the works. My advice—if you can snatch up tickets when new dates are announced, do it quickly! You don’t want to miss The Neck is a Bridge to the Body. There’s literally nothing else like it.

Here’s her site so you can check back often! KakiKing.com

Johannah Ridley is a budding songwriter and audio engineer. A quirky and all around cool gal. Find her at a social network near you ~ Facebook & Twitter