Majestico is the awesome-sounding moniker of Nashville’s Graham Fitzpenn, who’s spent the last several years carving out a local niche with a rambunctious blend of psych, garage, country, and folk. When he’s not blurring genre boundaries, he dresses up as a post-apocalyptic shaman and issues cryptic statements like, “Majestico is cruising a tram ride on the milky-way highway searching for the key to life.” His oddball hijinx and riotous sound have proven effective, though, as The Alabama Shakes recently brought Fitzpenn on tour. No doubt The Shakes’ bosses at ATO Records took notice, as they’ve since signed on to release Majestico’s latest album, When Kingdom Come.
The 10-track effort was produced by Andrija Tokic at Nashville’s Bomb Shelter Studios (the same combination The Alabama Shakes utilized for 2011’s Boys & Girl). In a press release, Fitzpenn claimed that the recording process was much more “intuitive” than sessions for 2012’s Love Is God EP or 2008’s Boundary Conditions, mentioning a more collaborative approach with his backing band. “This time, recording was a sinch,” he said. “The music fell onto the tape and the album When Kingdom Come materialized. A new saga has been formed in Nashville, Tennessee and the future has no bounds.”
Before this “saga” becomes available to ATO Record Club members on February 11th (then digitally March 4th), you can stream it in-full below. While the album kicks off with a gnarlier version of the Animals anthem “I Just Want To”, the remaining LP quickly splinters into a manic crash course of the seedier corners of all things rock. With little regard for genres, aesthetics, or listeners, Fitzpenn and Co. birth a flock of bizarre, one-of-a-kind musical creatures, from the feedback-laden punk jam “La La Gulag” and the blown-out surf-folk of “Semyaza Sings” to the roots-rock-meets-The-Doors of “Terrify” and the quiet and contemplative “Melons”.
Though there’s a certain sense of gimmickery to Majestico and the record, there’s no denying the sheer raucousness, the kind of energy that grabs you by the collarbone and shakes you stupid for each and every glorious second.