Friday, August 12, 2016

Jerry Gaskill / Come Somewhere / CD Review

Few drummers have ever managed to break out of the mold of their band and release a vital solo album.  It’s even harder when you’re the drummer in one of the most influential bands of the last 20 years.  Jerry Gaskill has been in the shadows while King’s X front man Doug Pinnick and Ty Tabor have taken the spotlight by releasing multiple solo offerings.  Come Somewhere is a solid pop album that at times sounds very much like Gaskill’s band.  Most of the time however, the album is rooted in the acoustic pop arena.  Overall, the album is more in line with Tabor’s solo efforts.  In fact, Tabor’s sound is all over the album; from the fuzzed out guitar tone he uses in King’s X to the vocal effects and production.


Come Somewhere is a deeply personal look into the life of Jerry Gaskill.  The subject matter delves into such topics as failed relationships and divorce to aging.  “I Saw You Yesterday” tells the story of how hard it is for a man to see his ex wife again.  It starts off with a nice acoustic guitar before going into a rocked out chorus which parallels the sadness and rage that he feels about the subject.  He even tells her to “bring your lawyer” in “Face the Day.”


A lot of people are complaining that there isn’t enough progressive rock on the album.  They fail to realize that Gaskill’s strength is really the ballads.  He runs the gamut of sounding like the Beatles and Jellyfish on the nursery rhyme sounding “Johnny’s Song” to Lenny Kravitz on “No Love.”   In fact, the majority of the album is acoustic pop which he does very well.  The melodies and harmonies are all very Beatlesque, which shouldn’t be surprising since King’s X often uses the same approach.


The whole album isn’t acoustic and Gaskill proves that he can rock when he wants to.  The opening song “The Kids” is a very King’s X sounding rocker that also has an underlying porno wah guitar.  “She’s Cool,” “Crazy,” and “Gallop” are all rockers.


The album isn’t without its missteps though.  The vocal delivery in “Crazy” just doesn’t do it for me.  The song sounds a lot like a Guns ‘n’ Roses circa Use Your Illusion.  “Face the Day” gets a little tedious too.  It does have some interesting parts in the songs such as the ending, but overall it’s just too repetitious and downright boring.


Jerry Gaskill’s Come Somewhere is a solid album that King’s X fans will love.  It sounds much like his contributions to past King’s X albums.  Unfortunately, I think the album may be a little too weird to be massively popular.

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