A five-minute video clip of KING'S X bassist/vocalist Doug "dUg" Pinnick talking about his new solo album, "Strum Sum Up", can be viewed below. The CD is being released today (November 20) via Magna Carta Records.
Like a slice of Pinnick's raw essence, "Strum Sum Up" is so free, so instinctual; it's Pinnick, as you've never heard him before. This raw, wah-wah-injected groove machine is powered by the stellar talents of Wally Farkas of GALACTIC COWBOYS fame, ARMY OF ANYONE's Ray Luzier, BILLY IDOL's guitar wizard Steve Stevens, Hal Sparks, 11's Alain Johannes, Kellii Scott, David Henning, and Pinnick himself (on guitar).
"Everything that was done for this record was right, for once in my life," says Pinnick. "It is like this portal has opened for me. Everything lined up and it resulted in something I am really proud of. 'Strum Sum Up' is the realest thing I've ever done."
Half of "Strum Sum Up" is composed of two-part rock "suites," containing extended jam sections following the song proper. Befitting Pinnick's newfound looseness, he and his band let 'er rip on many of these tracks. "We would play the song and immediately jam right after it on the first time around [in the studio]," says Pinnick. "The jams you hear are all the first take. We would do the song and then we'd jam, and the jam became the second part of the songs. Some of the jams are my favorite stuff on the record, and really showcase some of my best playing."
KING'S X fans are used to the tall man causing low-register-tone eruptions with his bass guitar. On "Strum Sum Up" (as he had done for his POUNDHOUND records and his 2005 Magna Carta solo release "Emotional Animal"), Pinnick plays six-string guitar joined by Farkas, Stevens, and Henning, all of whom create an overdriven, psychedelic sonic freak-out — the splendiferous sound of Pinnick's new self expression.
"Strum Sum Up", recorded by Michael Parnin (LIMP BIZKIT, RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE) at Blacksound Studio in Los Angeles, sports such gems as "Damn It", "Angel", "Coming Over" (featuring a funk diatribe that courageously rhymes "junk of your trunk" with "crunk"), "Cross It", and the explosive, inimitable "Dynomite".
"'Dynomite' is basically telling about my life and the way I felt about it," says Pinnick. "The chorus is saying, 'So, hit me with your dynamite'. I was recording and I had to stop my computer. I thought about that line. … Whenever I come up with a line like that it might take me five to ten years to figure out what I was truly trying to say. Maybe it was something that was going on deep down inside me, but I just didn't know how to verbalize it, and it comes out in these lyrics. Musically, I just love it. When the chorus kicks in, the music just slams. I can't wait to go out and do that song."
Pinnick can't hide his exuberance for playing his music — and "Dynomite" — recalling his early years when he was first exposed to the music of Sam Cooke, Chuck Berry, and Little Richard. "When I go out on tour with this band I am going to play guitar with Wally, and another guitar player," says Pinnick, who'll hit the road in support of "Strum Sum Up" in the fall of '07. "We are going to have three guitars and do the LYNYRD SKYNYRD thing."
Despite experiencing a new sense of openness and purpose, Pinnick still keeps a few things to himself: he refuses to reveal the origin of his solo record's mysterious title. C'mon, Doug, are you sure you won't tell us what inspired "Strum Sum Up"? "Yeah. I think I'll keep that one to myself," Pinnick says. "It's an inside joke. Maybe someday I'll tell the world what it means, but until then, people will just have to apply their own meaning to what it expresses to them. It's fun for now to let it be what it is."
Check out an audio sample at www.myspace.com/dugpinnickpoundhound.