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See How We Are (Deluxe)

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Editors’ Notes

By the time of See How We Are, Billy Zoom had left the band and Dave Alvin and Tony Gilkyson were brought in to fill the void. Alvin contributed one of his finest originals, “4th of July,” and the band basically followed his “roots rock” lead and threw together a handful of tunes that sounded like electrified versions of their acoustic Knitters side-project. The harmonies are more traditional and the tempos flow with a standard backbeat. Still, tunes such as “I’m Lost,” “You” and “Left & Right” would be another band’s best work. But X set the bar pretty high and depended on their own idiosyncratic sense of timing, so it was no surprise that old fans were a bit shocked. Once acclimated with the changes, listeners can find much to pull from. There’s still a great rumble behind “In The Time It Takes” and the title track is one of the band’s finest pieces of social commentary. The “Bonus Track Version” of the album includes several demos, including an excellent demo of the title track and a rough version of Dylan’s “Highway 61 Revisited.”

Customer Reviews


Billy Zoom had left the band by this point and Exene was very pregnant during the tour for this album. X was no longer an alternative - punk band. This album is more mainstream rock with (yikes) some keyboard overdubs. The sound is different without the great rockbilly picking of Zoom. Tony Gilkyson, formerly of the alt-country band Lone Justice (Ways To Be Wicked) handles the guitar duties on this one admirably. John Doe's vocals are strong, DJ Bonebrake hammers the beat and Exene harmonizes with Doe in a way that evokes Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris. X is at it's best with Doe on lead vocals and Exene singing harmony. Her voice is not good enough to handle lead vocals and on those tracks they falter. Highpoints on this album are: 4th Of July (a gem written by Dave Alvin from The Blasters who also plays on this album), See How We Are, Left and Right, When It Rains. This album was their last for a few years until they reformed. They left on a high note as this is a solid rock album and remains underrated.

X's Last Bang

The Last "Good" Album of X which I think was a huge bang considering the classic music off this album got me hooked. I don't know bout anyone else but this album stole my heart and now I'm a X Fan cause they can rock with a rhythm that no other band can copy!! They''ll be missed especially John Doe


Formed: 1977 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

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

X were far from the first punk rock band in Los Angeles, and they weren't the first to achieve some level of nationwide recognition, but in a very real way, they were the ones who put the L.A. punk scene on the map. X were the first L.A. punk band to be taken seriously by the rock press on both coasts, and at a time when many wondered how punk could thrive in the land of all that was mellow, X played music that was as raw, passionate, and powerful as anything coming out of New York, London, or any...
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