‘Eclectic’ is a word that can denote music that is strikingly diverse or wildly unfocused. Sadly, the latter applies more accurately to the lavishly named Grifter Kid And The Midnight Raiders.
Grifter Kid is the nom-de-plume of Suffolk born actor and stand-up comic Karl Theobold who writes and sings all ten ‘eclectic’ songs on the band's 4th album. He leads a four-piece lineup plus guest players which includes un-rock instruments such as saxophone, clarinet, flute and double bass
It’s hard to get an angle on what he and his band are setting out to do and I have the distinct impression that these jacks of all genres don’t really know themselves. To further describe the tracks as “feistily essayed songs” does little to sell them to the uninitiated.
A reference to “the mechanics of distraction” on a curious spoken word piece Anonymous Submission is perhaps a veiled admission that Theobold and his band find it hard to stick to any one musical style.
A meandering and highly indulgent seven minute plus jazzy instrumental Dial Up Doppelganger is emblematic of the hybrid sound they have created.
Opting for a pick’n’mix approach could conceivably have worked if combined with the right blend of anarchy and wit. Unfortunately, there is little evidence of either.
The plethora of musical styles, including jazz, folk, soul, early rock’n’roll, country blues, reggae and pop, therefore ends up being a head-scratching mishmash.
Grifter Kid’s website