2008 InsideOut Music
Review by: Matt Crosslin
You probably already know whether you are going to get this album or not. You have either stuck with King’s X through all of the Black Maniac Bulbous weirdness and will still get this, or bailed when they got weird and have no idea what you are now missing. For those of you that bailed, listen up: King’s X came back big time with Ogre Tones, and continue to prove they are back with XV.
I don’t like that they did, but I also understand why King’s X experimented. They started experimenting with their signature sound with my favorite KX album, Dogman. But many complained and so they went back. The resulting album, Ear Candy, sounded a little stale. And they lost their contract to boot. Tape Head was an improvement, but I think they just wanted to prove they could go somewhere without sounding stale. So they went all crazy for a few albums. That didn’t sit well with everyone (even though, as my friend Bird puts it – each album had some really cool songs on it)… so what do they do? They decided to stick with their sound but make sure it had some umph and not go stale. The last two King’s X albums have proven that.
Bono is famous for saying something like the most interesting music in written by people that are running away from God or running towards him. So which way is King’s X running? Well, they aren’t intentionally trying to piss off their CCM audience that they gained with Faith, Hope, and Love as much as they were in their weird period. I would add to Bono’s list those that are questioning why they should believe anything. That is what you have here – a lot of questions, but some growing comfort with the fact that it is okay to not have all of the answers. And some killer music on top of that. The first track “Pray” is classic King’s X with a little freshness added in (and pretty much also shows how they are questioning God and okay with those who are sure about Him all at once). This album doesn’t top their first 5 classic albums, but is a welcome addition to the vast King’s X catalog.