Ill Ray (The King)

Album: For Crying Out Loud (2017)

Songfacts®:

  • The opening track of Crying Out Loud, this is is a call to arms. Guitarist and chief songwriter Serge Pizzorno told NME: "It's a pure call-out tune. It's got the line 'What's your band called, mate?' It came from my best pal and every time I played him a new song I'd just whisper in his ear, 'What's your band called, mate?' It always made us laugh so I just wanted to use that. It's so ridiculously cocky, and it would make a great T-shirt as well."

    Pizzorno added that he has always admired the cockiness in hip-hop where rappers just call people out. "That Kendrick Lamar verse in 'Control' where he just says 'I'm coming for you', calling them out name by name. It's never really done in rock music, but we've done it so much," he said. "There's something amazing about being on stage in front of people and saying the line, 'What's your band called mate?' and 'You smell of hotel soap.'"
  • Serge Pizzorno: "I imagine this man in a leather jacket and slicked back hair in a ponytail slonked at the bar that will be Ray the King."
  • The song's music video, written and conceived by Serge Pizzorno, shows Game of Thrones' Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister), performing a magic ritual to resurrect Richard III in a Leicester car park. The setting is an allusion to the time in 2012 when the Leicester city council exhumed the monarch's skeleton in a Leicester parking lot. Headey then takes the late king on a trip through the city centre, stopping off at the pub and a shopping center.

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