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  • Writer's pictureJH

Episode #109: New King's X!


I don’t do album reviews.

I have a personal objection to passing judgment on other people’s art, so I just don’t do it. I mean, who am I to say what’s good or not good or worthy or not worthy? I can only speak in terms of what I enjoy or don’t enjoy, and for the most part I don’t talk about what I don’t enjoy either. I really do strive to make this podcast – and by extension my life – about positive and inspiring things.

Fortunate, then, that I enjoy and feel inspired by the new King’s X record Three Sides Of One.

And yes, I know I took a swipe at Bon Jovi’s lyrics in I’ll Be There For You on this episode. I actually considered editing that part out, but my feelings on those particular lyrics are genuine. But again, who am I to say? Massive, monster radio single. I don’t think Bon Jovi cares about my opinion of the lyrics in that song. Even if they do, I’m sure it made them enough money to cover the therapy. Why am I even writing about this?

As ever, it’s hard to do show notes without completely re-hashing the whole show, so I’ll say that I really do like the new King’s X album. It’s been 14 long years since their last studio album, XV, was released. The fans have been eagerly awaiting this record since we found out a few years ago that it was coming. Covid put the brakes on the release, which was kind of agonizing, but it’s here now and worth the wait. As I said on the episode, it divides opinions, but King’s X has always divided opinions, so it all feels very familiar.

Most of the fans love the record. Even those who were lukewarm on it are starting to come around (funny how King’s X records will do that to you). The band has always struggled with the legacy of their first four or albums – unique and compelling masterpieces that were either ahead of their time or simply out of time. There was nothing else like them and they created a rabid, if smaller than it should be, fanbase. Things became more experimental over the years, and I imagine the band got tired of fighting backlashes from people who wanted Gretchen Goes To Nebraska 2. That fight continues to this day, though there are shades of their earlier work in the new stuff. Those bits of familiarity feel warm on the listen, but the band continues in their 60s and even 70s to push and stretch. The new album is ambitious. It’s not a re-tread of older material and sounds. It incorporates those things into new ideas that sound genuinely fresh and energetic.

And as I said, I like it. A lot.

There’s so much more to my connection with King’s X than I talked about on the episode. I’ve interviewed dUg Pinnick (a highlight of my career) and chatted several times with the other guys in the band. I have a very funny and profound Jerry Gaskill story about how to play the kick drum. I bought the Tape Head album at Tower Records in Kagoshima, Japan. Dogman kept me company when I was lonely and somewhat isolated in my second year of university. King’s X has been the soundtrack to my life since I was a teenager and I feel very blessed that they are still making exciting new music all these years later.

For goodies this week I’m going to include the video for All God’s Children, as well as some footage of the band fighting and winning over AC/DC fans on what was such a challenging tour in the Faith, Hope, Love era. I watched that footage earlier this year and was so proud of them. Proud of their performance. Proud of their courage. Proud of the way they pulled those hostiles in by the face. What a band. What a legacy!

Thank you once again for listening to the show. If you want to let me know what you think of the album, have questions or episode ideas, or have music to recommend, you can contact me here.

And if you like the King’s X record – and this program – go tell somebody!

All God's Children

King's X winning over AC/DC fans in 1991

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