Review: Roses Kings Castles at St Barnabas Church – Soho

As you set foot into St Barnabas Church in Soho, you’re treated to a very regal and luscious setting. High tea decor and Victorian furnishings are what’s on offer here. Now this is not your normal setting for a single launch surely? Why are we not in Hoxton or Camden? Possibly the band are bored with the usual suspects for music venues? Adam Ficek, curator of all things Roses Kings Castles, certainly is and has made the decision to make this a special and memorable evening (07/06/10), one for his fans if you will. It’s the single launch for ‘One Born Every Minute‘ and also an opportunity to showcase new songs from his new album, ‘Suburban Time Bombs‘.


Looking very much the anti-front man, Adam is coy and humble and enjoying the chants of ‘Ficek Forever’ as he starts off with his new single, One Born Every Minute. If you haven’t heard this already, it’s a joyous and quaint British Pop ditty, which has copious amounts of charm and wit that Adam delivers brilliantly. ‘I Killed You‘ is first up out of the new songs and it’s a stomper. Reminiscent of his Babyshambles days and a wonderful experience to boot. On occasion Adam will step back a few decades and give you something classic and with a true 60’s vibe. ‘Words‘ is exactly that with its bouncing drums and catchy melody, all topped off with some dreamy sax fills.

Roses Kings Castles also played a song that apparently was only written that day. ‘Back Seat Living‘ was the surf pop driven, light and reflective touch to proceedings and a pleasant surprise for the fans. As Adam started to become more at ease and comfortable with his surroundings, he kicked into ‘Subtleties Of Love‘. We are informed it will be the next single and what a cracking song it is too –  a peculiar mix of funky guitar stabs and jazz sax reminiscent of The Zutons , vibrant with an odd pop sensibility – a pleasure from start to finish.


Adam creates subtle and touching music that has ounces of naivety thrown in. It has always been the key component to anything RKC has done, so on that note ‘In And Alive In Outer Space‘ does not disappoint. Full of gentle and heartbreaking moments that were warm and at times rather beautiful. As the night ends Adam treats his fans to something off his Apple and Engines EP and ‘Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid‘ seemed a fitting end to a special and memorable occasion.

It must be a struggle for Adam to step out of the limelight of his old band mates at times.  Not one to let that bother him he  let’s go and wears his heart on his sleeve for his fans. As they fill the chapel with admiration and love for this man, you can’t help but be drawn in. At times he seemed out of place and maybe a tad uncomfortable, but it’s that endearing quality that people go weak at the knees for.


Words by Peter Cornish-Barlow, photos by Emily Bailey.

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