When people ask me my three favorite bands, I answer Rush, Foo Fighters and King’s X. So I wanted to point out up front this is probably not an unbiased review. Man, it’s is great to hear new music from King’s X again! “Three Sides of One”, their first album in 14 years since 2008’s XV, and a great return to recording, and album that clearly sounds like three friends having a lot of fun in the studio.
“Let It Rain” and “Give It Up” are the first two singles you can stream now. Both fronted vocally by bassist Dug Pinnick, I love how straight forward they are, just a great groove, especially Give It Up. Can’t help but tap your toes during the sing along chorus. Both were in heavy rotation for me before hearing the rest of the album.
Fans of King’s X know, they tends to share lead vocals for different songs, and that’s the case on this new album too. My favorite song right now is the guitarist Ty Tabor fronted “All God’s Children”, which they have been playing live with the singles at recent shows. A slow building song, with a crescendo chorus and guitar solo, Tabor says it’s “one of the most misunderstood songs of the bunch”, saying it’s about “people who call themselves Christians, but they believe a whole lot of non-Christian things”.
Drummer Jerry Gaskill sets his personal vocal frontman record on this album with three songs, including “She Called Me Home”, a song about his return to playing from a recent heart attack. Gaskell said “I didn’t think I was ever going to play again, but a friend said, ‘You are going to play. You will get out there’.
A lot of this album has feels and sounds that are unlike any other King’s X album. Working with producer Michael Parnin in 2019, you can tell time was set aside not only songs, but sonic landscapes. Tabor said “This time, we sat around, listened to each other’s ideas, and would collectively say, ‘Let’s work on that’. “It was the most enjoyable album I’ve personally ever recorded in my entire life, period.” Dug Pinnick added “When I would listen to demo tapes of Jerry and Ty for the record, it gave me a great perspective on how blessed I am to be in King’s X. What they did on Three Sides of One sounded so good. For as familiar as it is, it’s like I’m in a new band.”
Some songs gave me tonal flashbacks to past songs I love. “Nothing But The Truth”, a favorite of mine on the album, reminds me a lot of “Flies and Blue Skies” from Dogman. “Festival” sounds straight out of the “Looking For Love” from Ear Candy playbook. Create great riff, vocal hook, repeat. On the flip side, not sure I have heard a King’s X song like “Flood Pt. 1” before. I had heard Pinnick mention in past interviews that the band Meshuggah had been an influence on this record, and I wasn’t sure how that would process. I see it in that song though!
If you’re fan of King’s X, this album is going to sounds like friends you haven’t seen in a while coming over for a visit. They have new stuff to talk about, and you love it. Hopefully the response leads to another record soone rather than later!
“Three Side Of One” – Out September 2nd on Inside Out Records. Available on the bands website – https://www.kingsxrocks.com/
1. Let It Rain 04:28
2. Flood Pt. 1 03:03
3. Nothing But The Truth 06:03
4. Give It Up 02:59
5. All God’s Children 05:32
6. Take The Time 03:45
7. Festival 03:30
8. Swipe Up 03:46
9. Holidays 03:22
10. Watcher 03:43
11. She Called Me Home 03:57
12. Every Everywhere 02:40
Live Tour kicks off in October.