Beyond & Back: The X Anthology

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X cannot be praised enough. The legendary L.A. band wrote countless classics, released consistent albums, and have influenced many along the way (just check out the raves fellow rockers give the band in Beyond & Back's liner notes). It's a testament to their greatness that the material on Beyond & Back: The X Anthology sounds original and fresh in the present day. The group touched on many styles, such as rockabilly, folk, and punk, and successfully made each one their own. This two-CD release is a hefty two hours long, and is 50 percent hits and 50 percent rarities/unreleased material (demos, outtakes, live takes, etc.). Highlights include the riff-heavy "Hungry Wolf," the beautiful vocal harmonies of "I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts," and the Nirvana pop of "White Girl." Some interesting oddities include a cover of the Doors' "Soul Kitchen," a remixed version of their "Blue Spark," and a live take of "Nausea" (a song Jane's Addiction covered). If you're unfamiliar with (or don't own) X's albums, do yourself a favor and get Under the Big Black Sun, More Fun in the New World, and Los Angeles/Wild Gift. Then work your way to Beyond & Back. You won't regret it.

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