Frank X – From Planet X
Label: Fallen Angels Records
Release Date: April 6, 2018
It goes without saying that musicians are really creative people. Combine musical creativity with a mastery of modern midi technology and an absolutely twisted sense of humour and you’ve described Quebec’s Frank X. Frank X has released the final part of his twisted musical theater piece and has succeeded in making yet another entertaining album, complete with killer tunes and hilarious skits.
From Planet X is the third installment in a trilogy about Lucifer’s determination towards world domination and is not lacking in bumbling hilarity. After being banished to Planet X by the Almighty at the end of the last album, Frank X and the Unreality Show, Lucifer makes his way back to Earth to recommence his efforts of domination. The album kicks off with Lucifer making transportation arrangements and getting thrust into the vortex dropping him back on Earth only after bribing his way with the promise of hot chicks on Earth.
“Into the Vortex” describes Lucifer’s trip, the stretching of the skin and the agony of being pulled through the vortex. One immediate element that jumps out on this track is the roaring sax solo, an inclusion I don’t recall in the first two albums. We then move to “Rise of the Nephilims” who Lucifer entices with promises of hot chicks and much sex. Another difference on this album versus the previous is the skits being added into the same tracks as the music. In the other two albums the skits were separate tracks in themselves. There are also less skits on From Planet X, Frank focuses more on the music this time around.
In this story, Lucifer employs the assistance of a wimpy scientist to create evil bots designed to wipe Earth clean of human scum. He aims to take control of a character named Buzzter to lead his war on Earth, but Buzzter is bound to only one being, the lovely Lilly. “Apocalyptico Circus” is a dark love song of sorts with a narrative style vocal accompaniment describing Buzzter falling in love with the enticing and stunning Lilly.
Back in 2015 when I first heard Frank X and the Project Earth (the first album of the trilogy) I fell in love with the concept, and was quite impressed with the music. After talking with Frank about it, I was floored to find out that its all programmed. Aside from his own vocals, the music on the albums is all composed using midi technology, but is done in such a way as to maintain the organic feel of playing the actual instruments. Never does it sound like computer programming.
I also thought that From Planet X contained more strings than the previous albums, but was corrected in a recent conversation with Frank and learned that it is mostly synth sounds that I mistook for orchestral strings. This album also utilizes more choral elements complimentary of the “Fallen Angels choir,” in Frank’s words. I have to mention as well, that myself and my wife had the pleasure of contributing some vocal work that was used in some of the skits, my wife playing Lilly. Sure you may think this makes me biased in terms of this review, and, well, fair enough. To that I say, I was already biased going into it because I am a huge fan of the first two albums.
From Planet X is an entertaining metal album and musical theater album. Whatever category you want to put it into, From Planet X is a great listen from beginning to end, ripe with killer riffs, sax solos, and skits that will have you laughing your ass off. I encourage you to start from the first album, follow the story, and embark on Lucifer’s wacky journey.
Also, check out my interview with Frank.
From Planet X has yet to have a music video released, so have a taste of the video for the title track of the second installment in this killer trilogy, “The Unreality Show”