Most helpful positive review
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
A different direction, but sounds good.
on 20 June 2008
I'm writing this review as I listen to the album for the first time, so all you're getting is my first impressions of the songs and a brief summary.
1. Half Truism - A good, chart-friendly, typically Offspring style singalong. Fst punk verses with a half-tempo chorus. Better than average but nothing special.
2. Trust in You - Sounds like the title song from the Smash album. A fast averagely good punk song of the type the Offspring do very well. Think 'The Long Way Home'.
3. You're gonna go far kid - Kind of dancy with a slow dragging chorus. I'm not overly impressed with this song. Puts me in mind of Panic at the Disco.
4. Hammerhead - Starts quite fast and heavy. The lyrics appear to be from a soldiers point of view. Changes 2/3rds through to a half-tempo chord-heavy punk rock number, kind of like the first track from 'Americana' (can't remember the name right now). The lyrics seem to now be about a school shooting, which is odd.
EDIT: Just listened to this song again and I like it very much.
5. A Lot Like Me - This is a totally new style for an Offspring song but I like it alot. This is how every Coldplay song should sound. Very emotional chorus. The song builds very well.
6. Takes Me Nowhere - Energetic up-tempo song. Sounds very much like 'Kick Him When He's Down' from 'Ignition'. In fact, it wouldn't sound out of place on that album.
7. Kristy, Are You Doing Ok? - I really like this song. It starts like a slow Feeder song, which isn't the best compliment, but soon becomes very listenable. Again, a totally different direction for the band. Quite poignant lyrics.
8. Nothingtown - Bouncy up-beat song that sounds like a mix between Less Than Jake's 'History of a Boring Town' and those bouncy 'minority' type songs that Greenday insist on doing. Not very good. I didn't listen to all of this as it got boring very quickly.
9. Stuff Is Messed Up - Hmmm... When this started I thought I was listening to Marylin Manson's 'Beautiful People'. In fact, if it were heavier you could imagine the lanky dead guy himself performing this. Quite good though, in a childish way.
10. Fix You - Starts like Greenday's 'Wake me up when September ends' but thankfully gets alot better. Another one in the new direction they've taken. I'm liking this song quite a bit. It's very emotional. If I didn't know better I'd say it was lifted from a Jimmy Eat World album, and that's no bad thing.
11. Let's Here it For Rock Bottom - Mid-speed rock number with a 'Police' style verse and a full-on rock chorus. Good chart friendly Offspring fodder with a singalong chorus that goes on forever toward the end. Will be a good crowd pleaser when played live.
Bit of an after-thought here: it sounds like Bon Jovi. Don't know what to make of that...
12. Rise and Fall - If this isn't a deliberate satire of Greendays 'American Idiot' then I'll eat my own hair. Even the album artwork that accompanies the song would suggest the similarities are deliberate. A very 'happy' rock song. Would sound good on the radio if they had the guts to play it and endure the inevitable Greenday comparisons.
It really, really does sound like 'American Idiot'.
Conclusion: I very much like this album.
There's no arguing here - they've gone in a very different direction with 'Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace' but, for me at least, it's a good direction. The endless 'Pretty Fly...' crap was starting to get annoying and this doesn't have one song that sounds like that.
I've only given it 4 stars because there are a lot of the die-hard 'Ignition' fans out there who are gonna hate this.
Personally, I think this has a much more mellowed adult feel to it. That's not really something you want from a punk band but in this instance it's worked very well.
If you like Jimmy Eat World, Greenday and 'Denial, Revisited' from Conspiracy of one then you'll like this.
If not, then just put 'Ixnay...' on and wait for the next album. I wouldn't hold your breath though...