NORTHERN PIKES, “King In His Castle”
When I saw Saskatchewan’s Northern Pikes play all of their best known hits at Toronto’s Mod Club back at the end of 2017, I was hoping that they might regroup and record some new music, given the enthusiastic welcome back from the crowd that night. Jay Semko, Bryan Potvin, and Don Schmid also brought along Grapes Of Wrath member Kevin Kane to fill the void left by the departure of vocalist Merl Bryck. And guess what? Kevin is now the fourth and latest Pikes member, and the band has released the self-produced “King In His Castle” as the lead off single from their upcoming album Forest Of Love. The Pikes are likely best known outside of Canada for their 1990 hit “She Ain’t Pretty”.
I’m a Pikes fan pretty much from day one and still own all of their album/CD releases from their heyday. I played music from their first two independently released EP’s back when I was in college radio = I still have my copy of Scene In North America – years before their debut album Big Blue Sky was released in 1987 with the huge Canadian hit “Teenland”. Seeing them at The Mod Club was probably my fifth or sixth time after catching them last as I recall on my birthday in 1993.
The Pikes’ rocking sound is more than intact on “King In His Castle”. A heavy guitar hook anchors the song with familiar vocals that are ageless. Rock radio in Canada should definitely grab “King In His Castle”, and if the rest of the music on the upcoming album is this solid, then a bonafide and most welcome comeback is here, since the Pikes last released original music together back in 2003. The Northern Pikes will be on the road again too across Canada between June and November, so be sure to catch them at a city near you!