- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 10, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION

Kix

“Rock Your Face Off”

Loud & Proud Records

You remember Kix, don’t you, the rockers responsible for the power ballad “Don’t Close Your Eyes”? Well, if not (shame on you, for one), the boys from nearby Maryland are back with “Rock Your Face Off,” an appropriately titled throwback to ‘80s power rock that proves that nostalgia for the era of high hair, outrageous glam outfits and attitude to match remains a potent force in music.

The album — the band’s first in two decades — kicks off with the endearingly surly “Wheels in Motion” followed by the joy of “You’re Gone” and “Can’t Stop the Show.” “Rollin’ in Honey” and “Love Me With Your Top Down” glory in adolescent, fist-pumping irreverence for sexual checkers, while “Mean Miss Adventure” is a cheeky nod to playful misogyny.

“Inside Out Inn” is an oddly fraught attempt at a ballad that is a bit hamstrung from forced vocals from frontman Steve Whiteman. Oddly enough, the titular track is a tad bland, and could have used an infusion of some Steel Panther-esque over-the-top verve and ‘tude (what we call “vervitude”), and the album sags a bit in the middle, where a more potent power ballad would have helped with overall flow.

The disc’s soundscape isn’t really anything new — and that’s precisely the point. Sure, we’re all getting older (except this writer, of course), but sometimes it’s fun to pop on some pumpin’ rock and pretend to be a wily teenager again. “Rock Your Face Off” sounds like it could have come right out of those halcyon days when Motley Crue, Cinderella and Damn Yankees ruled MTV — appealing to the inner irresponsible teenager inside all of us still anxious to make bad decisions on a Friday night.

“Rock Your Face Off” will redefine absolutely nothing, but what it does — revitalize the sound of that unapologetically sexually amped, thrashing ‘80s metal rock — it accomplishes in spades.

Kix will be performing two shows at Tally Ho Theatre in Leesburg, Virginia, Friday and Saturday at the Tally Ho Theatre. A documentary about their return to the music scene, “Can’t Stop the Show: The Return of Kix,” will be available Oct. 21.

Catch Kix kick back into gear by calling 703/777-1665 or visiting TallyHoLeesburg.com! 

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