King’s X has been one of my absolute favorite bands ever since I first heard “Gretchen Goes To Nebraska.” I shall, however, admit that there are a few albums I still haven’t fully taken to heart, “Welcome Home Mr. Bulbus” and “Manic Moonlight,” but I haven’t written them off. There have happened way more on the members’ side/solo projects than with this band, who haven’t released a studio album since “XV” in 2008. They signed with the highly odd label Golden Robot a few years ago, but fortunately, they switched over to the way more solid Inside Out. “Three Sides Of One” opens with “Let It Rain,” which really kicks off the album with some heavy rock and even some hints of Led Zeppelin, plus a really cool backward guitar solo from Ty. It kinda leans more towards Dug’s solo material, and it doesn’t have the big vocal harmonies, but a really good start! “Flood Pt 1” starts kinda strange but soon kicks into gear with some really heavy riffs and staccato rhythms, but soon jumps into a soft verse with strings and really nice harmony vocals. I can’t say this reminds me of anything they have done before, but I must say I really like it. They are taking it down a few notches with “Nothing But The Truth”, which starts off with soft plucking guitars, and this definitely reminds me of old-school King’s X, especially the harmony vocals in the chorus, while the verse is almost a bit bluesy. Dug still has a voice that gives me goosebumps! After a fake ending, Ty rolls in with a classic, long, and fantastic solo. “Give It Up” pushes the tempo up, and this is definitely King’s X in its prime. The first time I heard it, I was totally thrown by the key change in the chorus and had to go back and check what they did. A really cool thing, indeed! They’ve also thrown in a bit of Wally Farkas Yoko imitation for good measure. A killer track indeed! “All God’s Children” starts off soft and nice with a twelve-string guitar. A brutally heavy guitar riff rips it all up, but it returns to the soft verse with Ty on vocals. The chorus is based on the heavy riff, fat and simple but great. Harmony vocals – check! Interesting ending as well; where I had expected a long guitar solo, there were just plucking guitars and bass runs. I do miss that solo, but I won’t complain. “Take The Time” is an acoustic ballad with a Beatlesque feel to it, sung by jerry. Next up is the rocker of the album, “Festival.” It almost touches on a new wave with tongue-in-cheek lyrics about wanting to arrange a festival, but someone else must do the work. “Swipe Up” is another staccato roster, a bit different and not the traditional King’s X format, but a really cool song. It sure does have some classic King’s X elements woven into the web. Next up is “Holidays,” also sung by jerry.
A cool semi-heavy number, again with some Beatles vibes in the chorus and really nice harmony vocals. “Watcher” definitely has a “Dogman” vibe to it with the cool heavy groove and Ty’s vocal. The guitar sound has Ty’s classic Strat-type touch, and he again delivers an outstanding solo. One of my favorites off the album! “She Called Me Home” also sounds like classic King’s X with drop-D tuning, Strat-style plucking, and a big dose of nice harmonies. The album finishes with “Everywhere,” which sounds like a typical Dug tune. Kinda odd, but nice harmonies and a big chunk of nice melodies in the chorus. I really like the album’s production, which feels very analogous and dynamic. It does sound like real drums and tube amps. All in all, a great return I’ve been waiting a long time to hear! The X is back!