Normally when I go back and revisit 1990s indie bands I'm disappointed by albums which they released after I stopped listening to them. Senseless Things released two great albums and I remember being really excited years later to discover they'd done a third. After a couple of listens I tried to forget the discovery and go back to the first couple of albums. The same story can be said for other bands like the Wonder Stuff, Jesus Jones, etc... They shone brightest at the beginning of their careers and the reason I didn't hear about their later albums back in the day was a good thing.
Belly's second album however is an exception to this trend. While Star was a good album, there were a lot of tracks on it which needed dedication. It was a difficult album to introduce to a friend, because it went off on so many strange esoteric tangents. The opening track "Someone to die for" was an instant mood killer and meant it was destined for more solitary occasions and could never really get group listening approval.
King has trumped Star for me and I actually find myself listening to it more often. The whole album is consistently good and I enjoy listening to every track. There are no songs where I'm forced to keep listening based on the respect I have for the other, better songs on the album. You never have to just bite your lip and think, "O well, the next track will be on in three minutes".
With their second album Belly refined their sound, kicked out the weirdness which some people found off-putting and wrote more consistent songs. That's not to say that there aren't sensitive, introspective tracks on here as well. Judas, my heart is a great song in which Tanya's characteristic lyrics appear slightly nonsensical at first but then later in the song she reverses them to give a biting poignancy to the track.
Not to be over looked by Belly-fanatics is their Best of album. When I first saw it, I scoffed and thought why would a band that only had two albums need a best of CD? It just looked like a cheap marketing scam to get us to buy tracks which we already had on the albums. This isn't the case though, with their Best of album, "Sweet Ride", Belly have managed to do something new. Bringing together B-sides, live tracks, rare stuff and even a French rendition of "Judas, my heart" this is a great addition.
With King, Belly have broken the mould and proved that great bands from the 90s carried on making great music even after I stopped listening to it (for a while).