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King's X - Gretchen Goes To Nebraska CD (album) cover


King's X


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4.05 | 111 ratings

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The Crow
Prog Reviewer
4 stars King's X consolidated their sound and status with this very good second effort!

In my opinion this album does not reach the outstanding song writing levels of their debut, but it sounds better and the band is even more consolidated than before. And more varied too, because they increased the progressiveness of the songs and they also incorporated some new-age and psychedelic elements.

The production is a bit strange, because it not really homogeneous. Some tracks just sound different, and I'm not talking about the style, just the production. I don't know if it's deliberated, but strange nonetheless.

Out of the Silent Planet is a surprising mid-tempo with a psychedelic interlude and even sitar on it, with some kind of weak sounding guitars and Ty Tybor on vocals. And Over My Head, on the contrary, contains some incredible guitars and very original riffs, making this track on of King's X finest. A real classic!

Summerland starts with some mellow guitars which automatically bring Goldilox to mind. But this track is harder and more intense, despite being not so good. Pinnick's voice is also different on this album. His singing is higher pitched and rough this time, and I prefer his style on King's X debut which was more gospel oriented. Just my personal taste! And don't take me wrong? His voice is still incredible here.

Everybody Knows a Little Bit of Something is a more typical hard rock track, with some nice riffing and great bass lines at the verses. The chorus is a bit repetitive, but the song is still pretty good, specially the instrumental section and the solos. The Difference is a mellow acoustic track with Ty Tybor again on the vocals, who sings great vocal melodies this time. But the guitars are even better! Splendid track.

I'll Never be the Same is another hard rock mixed with some prog elements and another very good solo, just like Mission, a song which talks subtly about religion. Fall on Me follows the same path. Just good hard rock with splendid musicianship and some experimental elements towards the end.

Pleiades is another slower song with Ty Tybor on vocals, also in the style of the hit Goldilox at the beginning, but harder and more progressive after that. Don't Believe It is another competent hard rock song with fine choirs which will appeal to Extreme fans, and Send A Message is a very catchy tune with great verses, funky elements and funny lyrics wonderfully interpreted by Doug Pinnick.

The Burning Down has also Ty Tabor on leads vocals, and it has some incredible guitar melodies. The final part is just a little masterpiece with some new age influences and flutes on it. What a good way to give to end this album!

Conclusion: Gretchen Goes to Nebraska is not as cohesive as Out of the Silent Planet, and sometimes is even too long and repetitive. But it contains a lot of great songs and very innovative ideas, making it a very interesting listening for every prog rock and hard rock fan.

I still honestly prefer their debut, but that's just my personal taste because from an objective point of view this second effort is just as good, if not better. Strongly recommended!

Best Tracks: Over my Head, Summerland, The Difference, Pleiades, Send a Message, The Burning Down.

My rating: ****

The Crow | 4/5 |


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