King of the North

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King of the North

He was named as one of the ‘Top 25 Future Guitar Legends’ by Australian Guitar Magazine for pioneering the ‘3 from 1 guitar’ technique – meaning he found a way to produce the sound of two guitars and a bass through a solitary instrument. The King of the North himself, Andrew Higgs, explains: “Somehow I stumbled across the idea of how to make a two-piece sound like a five-piece. But I didn’t have the money or equipment to test it out at first,” Andrew laughed.
That’s until one “serendipitous” event back in his hometown of Adelaide, when he and bandmate/drummer Danny Leo found themselves alone in a room full of the equipment they needed. “I said to Danny, ‘just jump on those drums for a sec. I’m going to hook all this stuff up to see if it actually works’.” It did, and the rest is history.
Since that fateful day, Andrew and Danny knew they were onto something, but there was a problem – while Andrew had long since packed up and moved to Melbourne, Danny was still living in Adelaide. “During 2011 I’d go over there and do one or two shows in a weekend and then a month later he’d come over here. I like the analogy that you wouldn’t move to Alice Springs if you wanted to be a pro snowboarder, you gotta go where it’s snowing,” Andrew says in his typical laid-back manner. “One day Danny just said, ‘that’s enough! I’m moving to Melbourne’.
“Melbourne’s got the pubs and the music-loving crowd. There’s a real scene here and the crowd doesn’t need to be told what’s cool by a major radio station or major magazine, you know?”
Despite that, it seems KOTN may not be able to stay out of the mainstream for long. Their incredible sound has caught the ears of the bigwigs over at Triple M, who named their debut release Sound the Underground (out now) as ‘Album of the Week’, while the debut single, ‘Wanted’, is the soundtrack to the campaign for BMW Australia’s new ‘2 Series Coupe’. “We feel very blessed, we’re very lucky. Things have snowballed really quickly: within three months of playing around Melbourne we were playing Festival Hall with Cold Chisel, which was pretty gnarly!”
Be a part of Aussie rock history while the boys embark on the first national tour. “It feels really good, it’s kind of hard to describe! We love what we do, playing indie rock’n’roll, and the fact that people are getting behind us, so we can continue along, which is amazing.”
In between playing their solo shows up and down the coast, KOTN will be the support for US rockers Monster Magnet. Hailing from New Jersey, they cite 1970’s heavy metal as a major influence and have been making and releasing records since 1989. “We’re big fans of Monster Magnet and it’ll be pretty cool to be doing the national tour with them. I basically teed that up on a chairlift in Whistler when I was on holiday a couple of weeks ago. I was negotiating that between runs,” he joked. “It’s an awesome win for us. We couldn’t be happier.”
Be careful, however, as these gigs are not for the faint-hearted: “We sound like an absolute thunderstorm live!” You’ve been warned.
When&Where: The Bridge, Castlemaine – March 21 & The Newmarket, Bendigo – March 29
Written by Natalie Rogers