The Remnant Kings are Jon’s project away from the day to day work with Bellowhead and Spiers and Boden. But that’s not to say they are an afterthought. With Bellowhead being literally a logical collective extension of what Spiers & Boden were doing, The Remnant Kings are the essence of Jon Boden.
Drawing principally on his 2009 ‘Songs From the Floodplain’ album but with a new album scheduled to be recorded in 2014, the Remnant Kings feature Bellowhead’s Sam Sweeney & Paul Sartin and also the talented Rob Harbron with Rick Foot on bass.
Much of Jon’s RK’s work is inspired by post-apocalyptic literature, something represented at live gigs by the on-stage use of wax cylinders providing a distinctive counter to normal amplification. And as Jon explained in this Radio 3 essay, the prospect of a post-industrial world without gas or oil sits in harmony with the relevance of folk music and social singing. Frequently Remnant Kings gigs (and occasionally Bellowhead’s too) are followed with another, unscripted show in a local pub or room where the band and friends sing unaccompanied.
Jon’s exploration of this theme has led him to work with the Dark Mountain Project and he’s appeared at their Uncivilisation festival as well as local events such as South Yorkshire’s ‘The Telling’. Despite its seemingly dark nature, there is no conflict between Jon’s work as an entertainer and this – rather it is about the ongoing importance of social entertainment, stripped of 21st century technology that serves mainly to distance the artist from the audience.