Kid Freud Brought Unique Vocals and Sounds to the Nashville Rock Scene

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Kid Freud Brought Unique Vocals and Sounds to the Nashville Rock Scene

Mia Roettger, Editor

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Kid Freud, a Nashville based band originally named The ID Kids, brought a unique sound to the music scene with a mix of influences from some popular alternative bands. Eventually settling on the permanent name Kid Freud, the band labeled themselves garage pop. The frontman, Alex Tomkins, stated that, “We were too pop for the garage punks and too scruffy for the pop kids,” although iTunes classifies them as rock, and I definitely would not label them as the kind of pop that one might hear on the radio. Although the group is now disbanded, they drew on the use of strong bass, similar to Arctic Monkeys, and the drum styles of The Strokes. Kid Freud added their own personal kick to the raspy vocal stylings of The Kooks. This is not to say that Kid Freud has nothing new to offer, because they definitely do, or did before the band’s split sometime after its last show in June of 2018.

While the reason for the split is unknown, I assume it was due to creative differences in the making of their last released song, “Unkind,” which has been removed from all streaming platforms. According to Tomkins, he removed the song because, “It really made me really uncomfortable, and it was emblematic of a time when our creative process was very unbalanced and toxic.” In contrast, the other song on the two-track release, “Shut Up & Kiss Me,” remains available on multiple platforms and even has a music video on YouTube, attached below.

In the band’s three EPs they brought a garage pop and rock twist to the indie music scene. The End, the first and longest EP, released in 2015, relies heavily on the raspy vocals of lead singer, Tomkins, especially in songs such as “Evelene,” “Boston,” and “Can’t Take My Eyes off You.” Probably the band’s most popular song on the album, “The End,” tells the story of a rushed relationship. With lyrics such as, “Here we are again, skipped the middle, went straight to the end,” the entire song hopes for a turn of the relationship that is filled with lies and broken promises.

The second EP, American Boy (2016), takes an increased rock approach that was not very prevalent in The End. My favorite song on the album, “American Boy,” acts somewhat as a rant session. Each verse has a different topic that irritates or complicates the artist’s life. In response, the justification is “I’m an American Boy!” Towards the middle of the song, Tomkins criticizes his own lifestyle when he sings, “I put all of this – – – – in my body that I don’t need, like wine and whiskey and Cheetos and weed,” which is definitely my favorite line in the song because the singer’s so nonchalant yet empowered. The other songs fit this seemingly angry tone in “American Boy.” However, the third track on the EP, “Late (Lioness)” almost seems out of place and would fit better with the sound in The End because the anger is more subtle.

All in all, Kid Freud, while together, brought a wide range of sound to the indie rock music scene. Bassist Kurt Krafft still plays in Staying for The Weekend, along with producing his own solo material. The drummer, Daniel Closser, plays in Forest Fire Gospel Choir. In addition, Tomkins is currently working on his own material, and according to him, it should be ready to hear in six months. I look forward to exploring the new music from the members and hope for a time that they will one day play together once more. As a band, I rate Kid Freud a 3.5/5 for their unique vocals, along with bass and drum styles similar to some of my favorite artists.

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