Review: The Sun King (The XXXIX Empire) – 'Fuck SoundCloud III'


It’s hard to imagine a more ambitious musical persona than that of The XXXIX Empire. It’s a growing legacy is primarily built around three distinct personalities, all of which have sprung from the creative mind of Maxwell Page Fairchild. With a surname and online biography that dates back to 1639, there’s an ambling history and a powerful precedence, one that makes the XXXIX Empire all the more intriguing.


The XXXIX Empire is primarily based around three unique characters, with each one defining a unique part of Fairchild’s sound and ability. It’s through these personas that he writes, performs, records, produces, and creates music, and by using them as vehicles for his work, he’s managed to overcome a life of difficult moments. Within The XXXIX you’ll find Jimmy Carter, the personality that highlights Fairchild’s skills as a rapper and humourist, Maxx 39, the personality that highlights his skills as a rapper and poet, and The Sun King, the first personality that highlights his skills as a singer and percussionist.

It’s The Sun King that takes centre stage on new cut ‘Fuck SoundCloud III’. With a name taken from The Beatles’ song, The Sun King looks to represent the more positive aspects of Fairchild as a human being, as well as his more feminine side. Dedicated to the legendary Prince, and containing a sample of his own piece, ‘South’, The Sun King’s latest track is an intriguing vision that crawls to just under five minutes in length.


The first minute of the piece is bewildering refrain of repeated vocals and minimalist percussion, setting off warning bells for the remaining four minutes of the cut. Surprisingly, and perhaps mercifully, there is distinct shift to a funk-infused, largely psychedelic R&B that takes lead from Prince’s work and runs amok with it. It’s instrumentation that is rivalled in its experimental flourishes by the vocals, with Fairchild’s untarnished melodies flowing throughout. It’s a smooth composition that is brought to life in a somewhat unrefined way. A fitting dedication to Prince’s experimental spirit, ‘Fuck SoundCloud III’ is a mixed bag of enjoyment and confusion, flowing along a loosely defined path and finding a home in the middling ground between misunderstood genius and artistic nonsense. How you see it is entirely up to you.


Listen to ‘Fuck SoundCloud III’ now on SoundCloud.


Score: 6.5/10

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