Supergroups? Don’t you just love them? Or hate them? Ever since the dawn of the modern music business, the very mention of the the word ‘supergroup’ has sent many fans and critics – including yours truly – scurrying for cover. A rock group is either a rock group or its isn’t: just because the individuals concerned happen to play/have played in other groups at some stage in their combined careers does not, in itself, make the group ‘super’…
This particular group brings together three highly experienced musicians from three apparently disparate backgrounds – namely guitarist George Lynch, Kings X bassist/vocalist Dug Pennick and KoRN drummer Ray Luzier.
Musically, the album is very much closer to King’s X – it could be a natural successor to albums such as ‘Tape Head’ with its funkadelic vibe – and the nu metal meanderings of the Kalifornian krossover krew (sic) than the LA hair metal shredding background of the lead guitarist, who delivers possibly the most restrained and confined performance he has ever laid down.
In fact, ‘restrained’ is perhaps the consummate adjective to describe this particular release, as it doesn’t particular stretch the talents of its contributors, or either the imagination or patience of the listener. Built upon layers and layers of beautiful harmonies and melodies, none of the songs really move out of mid-tempo second gear, switching between the downright melancholic and the sub-euphoric in equal measure – in much the same way as King’s X built their own signature style: in fact, leaving aside Pennick’s distinctive delivery, it is extremely hard to escape comparisons with the Houston trio, as everything about the song structures reaks of the frontman’s full-time outfit. That’s not a bad thing, as this would be a damn fine King’s X album: but, it’s not, and therefore that is its ultimate downfall.
Nevertheless, this is an accomplished album from three accomplished musicians who could probably achieve so much more if allowed to flex their collective muscles in a slightly less derivative manner.
Stars / Rescue Me / Gunfight / Never Stop Loving You / Faith Is A Room With Many Doors / I’ll Be OK / Sleep / Love / Burn / Do It Now / Human Friction / Tranquilize
Recommended listening: ‘Faith Is A Room With Many Doors’.
‘KXM’ is released via Rat Pak / earMUSIC on June 2.