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King's X: Live Love In London
In recent times I've been quite dismissive of live albums, viewing them as nothing more than cheap cash ins, stop gaps and contract obligations. However every now and again a one comes along that blows all that cynicism out of the water by being a hard hitting, joyous celebration of what makes a band so vital in the first place. Live Love In London by King's X is one of those live albums!
Recorded in 2009 at the Camden Electric Ballroom in London, Live Love is not only a fantastic document of the uncompromisingly technical, grooving and bluesy music from across King's X career, but also evidence of what an irresistible live force this Missouri trio are and have always been. Rather than bulldoze you with sheer force, the Kings X way is to coax the audience into total submission with wave after wave of inspiring riffs, impassioned vocals, thumping bas lines and wild percussion, all of which is lapped up by the faithful in the hall and those listening now at home. It is impressive to say that 22 years after their debut Dug Pinnick's vocals sound as fresh and genuine now as they did all that time ago and with Ty Tabor always having been one of the most inspirationally original guitar players around, he has a perfect foil to stand alongside. Grounding it all in spectacular fashion is the tremendous drumming of Jerry Gaskill, who blends a subtle precision with an uncompromising power to drive on this often misunderstood and under rated power trio.
Spread over two discs, Live Love has the space to bring together early songs like "Summerland" and "Over My Head", with "Go Tell Somebody" and "Pray" from their most recent release XV and much in between. It is however the conviction shown across all the songs that is most impressive and the crowd response is equally as enthusiastic. The singalong during "Goldilox" makes you yearn to be in the crowd, while the reaction given to "Over My Head" and the speech that Pinnick gives regarding why no one who makes music should ever compromise their beliefs, is uplifting to say the least. The fact that he and his band go on to prove that ethos across these two discs is even more commendable.
Live albums should be rip roaring romps through a band's best moments from their back catalogue, delivered with style and conviction and I'm glad to say that Live Love In London is one of the best examples I've heard of that in a long time.
Looks like I need to invest in the DVD as well!
1. Groove Machine
5. What Is This?
6. Lost in Germany
7. Black Flag
10. Go Tell Somebody
12. Looking For Love
14. Over My Head
15. It's Love
16. We Were Born To Be Loved
Added: December 10th 2010
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: King's X Rocks
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