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King's X

Few hard rock bands are as widely respected yet criminally overlooked as King's X. The trio (bassist/vocalist Doug Pinnick, guitarist/vocalist Ty Tabor, and drummer/vocalist Jerry Gaskill) seemed destined for the big time with their irresistible blend of melodic Beatlesque harmonies, metallic riffing, and prog rock detours, yet for reasons unknown, never truly broke through to a mainstream audience. Pinnick (b. September 3, 1950) first met Gaskill (b. December 27, 1957) when the duo was touring with the Christian rock outfit Petra, and soon after, met up-and-coming guitarist Tabor (b. September 17, 1961). The trio joined forces in 1980 with the Top 40 cover band the Edge and thoroughly played the Missouri bar scene. By 1983, the band had changed its name to Sneak Preview and was now completely focusing on original compositions -- resulting in an obscure and very hard to find self-titled debut album released around this time.

Sneak Preview were offered a recording contract in 1985 if they relocated to Houston, TX, which they did, but the deal failed to materialize. Undeterred, the trio continued on and perfected its sound and songwriting further, catching a break when ZZ Top video producer Sam Taylor took the group under his wing, helping it secure a recording contract with New York's Megaforce label in 1987, and suggesting that the band change its name to King's X (the name of a local outfit that Taylor was an admirer of back in his high-school days).

In 1988, King's X released their debut album, Out of the Silent Planet. Despite praise among critics, the public didn't know exactly what to make of the group's original and multiple genre-encompassing style, and the album sank without a trace. But with the band's sophomore release, 1989's classic Gretchen Goes to Nebraska, a buzz began to develop around King's X in the metal community, as members of Anthrax and Living Colour praised them in the press, and MTV granted a few airings of their anthemic track "Over My Head." The stage was set for the group's big breakthrough, and things appeared to be going according to plan when the band's third release, Faith Hope Love, surfaced in late 1990.

The album just missed the U.S. Top 30 and nearly reached gold certification, due to landing a lengthy spot opening on AC/DC's sold-out arena tour in both the States and Europe, while the Beatlesque "It's Love" received major air time on MTV. What should have been an exciting time for the group quickly turned sour, however, as the bandmembers began to experience trouble with manager Taylor. King's X's self-titled release from 1992 (and first to appear on Atlantic Records without the Megaforce imprint) proved not to be as focused as their previous pair of albums, resulting in the album disappearing quickly from sight after release (and their ensuing tour halted), as they ended their relationship with Taylor.

But it appeared as though the change had refueled the group's musical desire once again, as evidenced by the Brendan O'Brien-produced stellar 1994 release, Dogman, which performed respectfully on the charts. This success resulted in the band opening shows for Pearl Jam and a show-stopping performance on the opening night of the mammoth Woodstock '94 festival. Atlantic Records began putting pressure on the trio to deliver a breakthrough hit but when Ear Candy failed to live up to expectations, King's X left the label (Atlantic would issue one more release from the band a year later, The Best Of, which featured 13 fan favorites, as well as three unreleased compositions and a live track).

In 1998 the group signed to the Metal Blade label, as both Pinnick and Tabor issued their first solo albums (Tabor with Moonflower Lane and Pinnick with Massive Grooves, the latter issued under the alias Poundhound), followed by the group's seventh studio release overall, Tape Head. Now free to issue albums at their own pace, the group issued two more albums only a year apart -- 2000s Please Come Home...Mr. Bulbous and 2001's Manic Moonlight. Pinnick continued his solo career in conjunction with King's X, issuing Poundhound's second release, Pineappleskunk, the same year (as well as forming a side project with former members of Trouble, dubbed Supershine), while Tabor issued two albums with the prog metal supergroup Platypus -- 1998's When Pus Comes to Shove and 2000s Ice Cycles. Around the same time, King's X received a pleasant accolade from their peers when they were voted as one of the "100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock" on a VH1 TV special. In 2003, they released Black Like Sunday, a collection of re-recorded songs from early in their career that had previously only existed as demos or bootlegs. Their first concert album, Live All Over the Place, arrived the following year, followed by their 11th studio recording, Ogre Tones, in 2005. King's X released XV on the InsideOut label in 2008. ~ Greg Prato
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: XV

1. Pray

2. Blue

3. Repeating Myself

4. Rocketship

5. Julie

6. Alright

7. Broke

8. I Just Want To Live

9. Move

10. I Don't Know

11. Stuck

12. Go Tell Somebody

13. Love And Rockets (Hell's Screaming) [Bonus Track]

14. No Lie [Bonus Track]

x

Track List: Tapehead / Please Come Home...Mr. Bulbous / Manic Moonlight

Disc 1

1. Groove Machine

2. Fade

3. Over And Over

4. Ono

5. Cupid

6. Ocean

7. Little Bit Of Soul

8. Hate You

9. Higher Than God

10. Happy

11. Mr. Evil

12. World

13. Walter Bela Farkas (Live Peace In New York)

Disc 3

1. Believe

2. Manic Moonlight

3. Yeah

4. False Alarm

5. Static

8. Vegetable

9. Jenna

10. Water Ceremony

x

Track List: Ogre Tones

1. Alone

2. Stay

3. Hurricane

4. Fly

5. If

6. Bebop

7. Honesty

8. Open My Eyes

9. Freedom

10. Get Away

11. Sooner Or Later

12. Mudd

13. Goldilox (Reprise)

14. Bam

x

Track List: Manic Moonlight

1. Believe

2. Manic Moonlight

3. Yeah

4. False Alarm

5. Static

6. Skeptical Winds

7. The Other Side

8. Vegetable

9. Jenna

10. Water Ceremony

x

Track List: Ear Candy

1. The Train

2. (Thinking And Wondering) What I'm Gonna Do

3. Sometime

4. A Box

5. Looking For Love

6. Mississippi Moon

7. 67

8. Lies In The Sand (The Ballad Of...)

9. Run

10. Fathers

11. American Cheese (Jerry's Pianto)

12. Picture

13. Life Going By

x

Track List: Dogman

1. Dogman

2. Shoes

3. Pretend

4. Flies And Blue Skies

5. Black The Sky

6. Fool You

7. Don't Care

8. Sunshine Rain

9. Complain

10. Human Behavior

11. Cigarettes

12. Go To Hell

13. Pillow

14. Manic Depression

x

Track List: King's X

1. The World Around Me

2. Prisoner

3. The Big Picture

4. Lost In Germany

5. Chariot Song

6. Ooh Song

7. Not Just For The Dead

8. What I Know About Love

9. Black Flag

10. Dream In My Life

11. Silent Wind

x

Track List: Faith Hope Love

1. We Are Finding Who We Are

2. It's Love

3. I'll Never Get Tired Of You

4. Fine Art Of Friendship

5. Mr. Wilson

6. Moanjam

7. Six Broken Soldiers

8. I Can't Help It

9. Talk To You

10. Everywhere I Go

11. We Were Born To Be Loved

12. Faith Hope Love

13. Legal Kill

x

Track List: Gretchen Goes To Nebraska

1. Out Of The Silent Planet

2. Over My Head

3. Summerland

4. Everybody Knows A Little Bit Of Something

5. The Difference (In The Garden Of St. Anne's-On-The-Hill)

6. I'll Never Be The Same

7. Mission

8. Fall On Me

9. Pleiades

10. Don't Believe It (It's Easier Said Than Done)

11. Send A Message

12. The Burning Down

Comments

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Used to seeing with Pantera at the backstage in Houston
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great band, saw them in July 1988 when they toured with Hurricane and been a fan ever since!
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Where's their first album Out of the Silent Planet? It was an album not just a song. I had it is how I know.
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They toured with the Scorpions and did a hell of a job.Never heard nothing at the dog man Cd
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Can't remember the year but in Nashville something blew...they toned it down to acoustic till it was fixed. Awesome show
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jamieb12871
DITTO ...get outta my 'ead
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Seen them live three times and every time they amazed me and great people to
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As everyone seems to agree... criminally under-apprec i a t e d . (Like Prism, Legs Diamond, Angel, Dokken, etc.) Going to see them in June with my boys who grew up on their sound. Hope they play the classic tunes, and don't try to sell new stuff to old fans!
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One of the greatest rock bands to ever exist! They are incredible musicians. They have great songs and are great players. I will always love and respect this band!
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Had their own sound...dogm a n a masterpiece, s e e n them few times and they are great as hell
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Although they never made it big on radio this is a very big band n my heart. They are Jimi Hendricks meets CSNY in my mind. I hear music....
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jkinney2311
Thanks Kings X for just being here. we are lucky
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Played with Dug in the early 70's stone flowers
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Their sophomore offering Gretchen Goes To Nebraska is simply mindblowing. Another great band lost in the shuffle.
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Somehow I lost track of this band in the 90s. I wanted to get some of their stuff, but never did. Glad I found them!
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jamieb12871
Maybe jimi/zz
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I am one of their biggest fans. dUg. Ty. Jerry. Three amazing musicians.
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jamieb12871
Got 2 hang w/ them backstage in '89...really didn't know what 2 say(was17/ha d n ' t heard of 'em)...NOW I KNOW WHAT IT WAS LIKE 4 PEOPLE WHO 1ST MET DARRELL(ABBO T T ) / P A N T E R A
..BUT HADN'T HEARD(OF)THE M B4!!!
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jamieb12871
VERY.

VERY


VERY.

U. N. D. E. R.
A. P. P. R. E. C. I. A. T. E. D.
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jamieb12871
RUSH & IN LIVING COLOUR =baby
This would B their very gifted child
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Wow amazing musicianship . Underrated as hell.
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Great music, too bad Doug brought them down, too bad Ty lost his faith, I do wish them the best. Their music continues to be my favorite, except when Doug opens his foul mouth ...
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Great music from a great band!
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lisab72
Great band, great group of guys too. Seen them several times live and the biggest compliment to them? Each time the audience was full of musicians! They may never be big to the sheeple but when fellow musicians are your biggest fans you know you are doing something right.
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Powerful knock you on your a** wall of sound!
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briansreed0
Should have been huge! Great band!
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Kings x Ffuck rock oh yeah!!!!
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Love y'all!
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Incredibly talented and criminally overlooked.
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This band makes me proud to be a Houstonian. Best band besides ZZ Top to come out of H-Town.
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Best three piece out of Texas...
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scorpican9
AWESOME BAND PERIOD!!!!!! Pete
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I have seen them probably 20 tims since 1989 and I will see them in May.
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The Bee Gees song, World, and the King's X song, World, song are two different songs. This song was written by King's X.
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I've got the albums King's X, Dog Man, Out of the Silent Planet and XV. Glad my dad had a good taste in the early 90's
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Became a huge fan when I heard them on Rockline promoting Dog Man many years ago. Never get tired of them. If you think KingsX is mediocre, (you need to learn how to spell mediocre) your not really a fan of Rock music either.
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Saw them with Galactic cowboys at harpos once, pretty rad show!!!
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rytnbfytn55
These guys have inspired me to get back into the struggle again...Love them!
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Good artists copy; great artists steal. The beauty of King's X is their ability to assimilate the rock lexicon into something fresh and exciting.
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rick.sansom
Wow! I don't make fun of Bieber.
Report as inappropriate
I have a substantial collection and it has nothing from Kings X in it. I find them totally medicore, hackneyed and boring with almost every musical cliche possible in their music.
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if you don't have everything from kings x in your collection, you don't have a collection
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One of my all time favorite bands. seen them over 20 times threw the years recently in NYC at Stage 48. They still rock!!!
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I second what a lot of people have said here. This band is indeed huge-soundin g live...the instruments, and especially the harmonies, are flat-out ridiculous. I was up front, and Doug came over and jammed on the riser right in front of me. Totally freakin' EPIC.
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I like Sooner or later and mufd from ogre tones
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Greatest band ever!
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Freedom is such a cool song. These guys should have been huge.
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kvons1
Too bad they can't actually play the title track DOGMAN! What???
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Been a fan since out of the silent planet. Great band. Not underrated but certainly underplayed.
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i love them so much i tatoo'd em on my _______. fill in the blank
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