Kings X has been threatening to break into the arena league for a couple of years, but for now must be content with headlining shows at smallish theaters like this one.
The band’s larger-than-life wall of sound is impressive for a three-piece and is one of the reasons the band is often compared to labelmates Rush.
Their two-hour set sampled all four of their Atlantic-issued albums, though their most recently issued, self-titled collection was a slightly larger part of the show than the band’s earliest releases.
Newer songs that were effective included the almost-hit “Black Flag,” the majestic “World Around Me” and new single “Prisoner.” The latter featured a guitar nod to Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson who appears to be a big influence on Ty Tabor’s style.
It was catalog titles that worked the best here. The ’70s-styled “Summerland, ” the dreamy “It’s Love” and the very hooky “Over My Head” were all highlights.
What sets Kings X apart from many of their contemporaries — soaring, effecting back-up and harmonizing vocals — were delivered with a power and a passion that saved some songs from dying an ugly, bombast-induced death.
That fate was reserved for DGC act Galactic Cowboys, who answered their own question in the song “Why Can’t You Believe In Me.” Noise for the sake of noise seemed to be the credo of this foursome who are posed and poised to become the new Bon Jovi of heavy metal.