The Rock City archives: 2015

New City Kings, Rock City Basement

  • Thursday 7th May 2015

New City Kings are an alternative rock band based in Brentwood/Chelmsford in Essex. Formed in 2013 they are a band who's genre-twisting guitar based songs have been steadily turning heads on both sides of the Atlantic. Having so far self-released a number of singles and short EP's via their own independent label Bam Records, New City Kings are a grass roots band in the process of building something limitless. 

Combining edgy, infectious melodies with insightful lyrics, the UK-based band has earned fans on both sides of the Atlantic, drawn to New City Kings’ taut musicianship and penetrating songs. Performing at such prestigious festivals as South By Southwest, Bestival, CMW and Download Festival, as well as opening for such acts as Little Comets, Walk Off The Earth, The Cribs, Marilyn Manson, and London Grammar, has earned vocalist Mark Kovic, his brother & guitarist Ben Kovic, and drummer Ben Nyari a growing and enthusiastic fan base.

A demo recorded by the brothers won them a competition, earning their first overseas opportunity to headline the Indie Week Festival in Toronto. Needing a drummer to complete their sound, they found Ben Nyari in their hometown of Chelmsford. “We met Ben N at the pub, and it all went from there - it was an instant connection, I suppose we were just destined to meet.” - Ben Kovic.

“Getting an expense paid trip to play our music in Canada was probably the first point where we realised something bigger than just us was being built.” - Ben Nyari.

Mark describes New City Kings as a “British grass roots band with a lot of American influences”, and it’s that ability to draw on the best of two musical cultures that provides the foundation for the band’s unique sound.

Mark’s voice has a potent sense of drama and passion that light a fire within any lyric, yet there’s a haunting vulnerability that permeates the band’s ballads. It’s a sound vocal gift that is helping distinguish New City Kings from other rising young bands.

Since releasing their debut EP in 2014 via their own independent label, New City Kings have continued to build a solid reputation as a great live act, while making inroads at radio with the single “Giving Up”. Mark says the song came during a turbulent time in the band’s history. “Everyone has moments when they can’t face the day and they just want to ‘throw in the towel’. For us, ‘Giving Up’ was a song facing that day and exorcising the emotion of it, knowing that it was never an option”.

In a short time New City Kings have proven to be one of the most innovative young rock bands out there today.

“It’s clear that New City Kings have become much bigger than the three of us. It’s a community of people now, and there’s a lot that we owe to making sure that we deliver.” - Mark K