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Album Review

The inclusion of the delicious "This Beat Goes On"/"Switchin' to Glide" (tied with the Vogues' "'Five O'Clock World'" as the greatest clock-out song ever)," a perfect double A-side produced by the celebrated Bob Ezrin, almost qualifies this CD as a sure bet. Ballsy vocals and boss keys (usually the bane of this period) result in two of the few totally timeless tunes from the '80s. The Kings' career could rest on this incredible single, and unfortunately does. The energy level plateaus for "Lesson to Love," which features acoustic strumming and sets the tone for the remainder of the record. These Canadians are truly underrated and unappreciated, but the tight arrangements and tough delivery still ring confident and knowing (although "If We Don't Belong Together" and "Parting of the Ways" veer dangerously close to adult contemporary). The title track and "To Be in Love" build up steam and the hippie-shaking "Cosmic Groove" rocks. Sure, the Kings can't live up to the opener (but what an opener!), yet vocalist David Diamond and guitarist Mister Zero know their hooks and never pretend to be above their craft. Unlike most aging rockers, the Kings prop melody and punch behind their pop. [Dizzy reissued the album in 2008.]


Formed: 1979 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Vocalist/bassist David Diamond, keyboard player Sonny Keyes, drummer Max Styles and guitarist Mister Zero founded the Kings in Ontario in 1979. Somewhere between new wave and rock, the band released a 1980 single, "Switchin' to Glide," that did well in the U.S. as well as Canada. The Kings Are Here appeared the same year, but...
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Unstoppable, The Kings
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