King's X - Gretchen Goes to Nebraska

Post reviews of new (and old) albums. Try to be objective, so that other readers have enough information for them to know if they might like it.

King's X - Gretchen Goes to Nebraska

Postby ianmitchell » Thu Sep 23, 2004 9:35 pm

Gretchen Goes to Nebraska by King's X (1989)

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

I'm going to try to put up a few reviews of new and old albums over the next while as time permits, but I figured I'd start with the album that was really my introduction to 'non-mainstream' music.

I first bought this album because a friend had told me how great it was (he'd played 'Legal Kill' from Faith Hope Love for me, but that is a pretty atypical King's X song). The first time I listened to it, I pretty much thought 'what the heck is this?' and decided I'd just wasted the money. But, a few weeks later I decided to give it another try, and thought maybe there was something to it after all, and before long it was one of my all-time favourite albums.

I don't think there's a weak track on this album. It has moments of weirdness and originality, while still being at least reasonably accessible with some catchy choruses and hooks. The music is complex without being overindulgent. All three band members can sing, with Doug Pinnick's soulful vocals providing an interesting contrast to Ty Tabor's and Jerry Gaskill's beatlesque voices; the vocal harmonies play a huge part on this album (far more so than on their more recent albums).

Highlights include the somewhat strange 'Out of the Silent Planet', with prominant sitar and lyrics inspired by C.S. Lewis' book of the same name, the catchy straightforward rocker 'Over My Head', and the atmospheric guitar work at the end of 'Pleiades'. The lyrics definitely have a spiritual leaning, but it's not a Christian rock album by any means.

The album would probably be found in the heavy metal section at most record stores, and it definitely has some heavier moments, but I wouldn't really consider it a metal album.

Overall, I believe this is the definitive King's X album; it could probably use a remastering, but after having it for about 14 years I still consider it one of my favourites.

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Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

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