King’s X at The Token Lounge in Westland, MI

King's X at The Token Lounge in Westland, MI

King’s X performance at The Token Lounge in Westland demonstrates the power of three musicians to fill the hearts of their fans with the passion of music.

From the moment that you entered The Token Lounge in Westland, you could feel the excitement and love for the headlining band; King’s X. To say that this band of amazing songwriters and performers is adored by their fans is an understatement. The crowd spans generations and everyone shares their lifetime of joy that the music of King’s X has given them. Tonight, they celebrate together the gifts of Doug Pinnick (bass/vocals), Ty Tabor (guitar/vocals), and Jerry Gaskill (drums/vocals) through the power of their music.

Opening the show is Detroit’s Most Wanted. While they aren’t on the FBI’s list, they are a solid hard-hitting rock band. Their music is full of hooks with hearty riffs and plenty of low-end pulse. The vocals are strong and resonate with a 90s hard rock vibe. If you conjure the sound of Alter Bridge, Fuel, and Shinedown you’ll get the idea of Most Wanted’s sound. Their set of hard rock gets the night rolling.

Sound & Shape hail from Nashville and quickly made an impact with their music. Like King’s X, Sound & Shape’s music is driven by melody. Their set features many songs from their latest album, Disaster Medicine. With drums and bass propelling each song, the melodic vocals combined with powerful guitar are expressive and highly emotive. While Sound & Shape’s entire set was impressive, the songs “Someday Maybe” and “Heirlooms” stood out due to the expert use of dynamics to amplify the emotional quality of the sound. In particular, the interplay and harmony of the drums with the guitar made these songs magical.

The cheers are loud and strong as King’s X takes the stage. The cries of “Doug,” “Jerry! Jerry!”, and “Ty!” elicit smiles from the band before launching into “Groove Machine.” The signature sound of this band is remarkable. Doug’s throaty and articulate bass, Ty’s meaty riffs, and Jerry’s succinct and concussive drums combined with their legendary vocal harmonies forge one of the most unique sounds in rock music.

Favorite songs “The World Around Me,” “Pillow,” and “Flies and Blue Skies” initiate the near-continuous singing by the crowd. The amount of love that King’s X fans have for the band’s music is thrilling to experience. Doug, Jerry, and Ty make eye contact or point a finger in acknowledgment of this shared communion.

The bulk of the set tonight includes music from Three Sides of One which was released by King’s X in 2022. This album is the band’s 13th studio album and their first new release since XV back in 2008. The new songs capture the essential power of three stellar musicians coming together as a single unit to blow our minds. The melodic diversity and harmonic exploration is beautifully rendered. Inside the music are messages of hope, of believing in yourself, and seeking truth. Many fans clearly are well versed with the new album as they sing along to “Give It Up” and “Festival.” Granted, the choruses are catchy as hell which makes singing along that much more fun.

King’s X wrap up their set with a blazing performance of “We Were Born to be Loved.” Ty and Doug take center stage as the entire band rocks out the hypnotic start-stop riffage that is a signature of this tune. After the final barrage, King’s X thanks the crowd and heads off stage. 

The house lights remain low as the cheers from the crowd grow more insistent with each passing second. King’s X comes back on for an encore that includes gritty grooves of “Dogman” followed by the sweet melody of “King.” Doug and Ty swing their mics toward the audience. The crowd along with the band bring the show home with “Goldilox.” It is touching to watch the faces of the band as the fans sing this song perfectly. What a wonderful way to wrap up a majestic night of music.

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About Chuck Marshall 45 Articles
Chuck loves music. If it is powerful and played with conviction, that is even better. In a past life, Chuck enjoyed thrashing on the stage in a Michigan metal band (Battalion). Now he prefers to use his imagery and words to capture the essence of a concert or an album. See and feel the music with Chuck; you’ll be glad you did.