Review : Offspring - Days Go By
PopmattersYou hear that? That’s the sound of rock radio programmers and bleached-blonde Vans Warped Tour attendees the world breathing a collective sigh of relief. So Cal’s most successful punk band ever is back, and they’d like people to know that they don’t intend to rest on their laurels when it comes to their ninth studio album. (Jesus, has it really been nearly 20 years since “Come Out and Play” burst out of nowhere to become the first independently-released single to top the Billboard Modern Rock chart?) Let’s be frank, though: I’m sure we all learned at some point in school that trying your damnedest doesn’t necessarily correlate to turning out the best damned work you’ve ever done. Good effort, kid, but does the final result warrant the grade you’re aiming for?
That’s a polite way of saying Days Go By isn’t better than Smash, that multi-million-selling 1994 breakthrough that comfortably remains the Offspring’s most accomplished moment. Even so, there are high expectations being generated for this new CD. The party line from the Offspring is that the four-year gap between Days Go By and their last LP, 2008’s Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace, was the result of diligent tweaking and polishing of the material intended to ensure that their new offering would be all killer, no filler. It sounds like a flimsy spin spiel—but then you pop in the disc and are greeted by the bounding charge guitars and drums given arena-sized weight courtesy of Metallica producer Bob Rock, and all that talk does seem to evidence genuine merit after all....full text
WikipediaDays Go By" has received positive response. Amy Sciarretto of Loudwire described it as "gimmick-free" and "a bit more contemplative, lyrically and comparatively speaking, as Holland ponders the then and the now. Overall, it has the bouncy rock vibe of a Foo Fighters tune with the added sprinkle of the Offspring's American punk rock flavor." The song received another positive review from Sylvie Lesas of Evigshed, who called it a "cool song, awesome sonic trip through the sounds of 90s and modern rock that rips and doesn't disappoint." Lesas also described it as a "memorable melody, intense distorted guitars and infectious chorus/verses making this song, thrilling enough to whet your appetite for their upcoming album...full text
ConsequenceofsoundBack before Bad Religion spearheaded a mid-’90s second wave of West Coast malcontents, The Offspring were going from demons and guillotines (1989′s The Offspring) to no-strings rendezvous and suicide cases in LA (1992′s Ignition), striking success around 1994′s Smash, branded the best-selling independent album of all time. More recently, however, 2008′s Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace was pseudo-political, critically eviscerated blandness that morphed The Offspring into a band that parents might have once considered hip and rebellious, now left playing “classics” playlists at half-full amphitheaters. To future generations, we are collectively sorry about “Kristy, Are You Doing Okay?”.
Fast-forward to today. The Offspring’s newest release, Days Go By, is both disjointed and mildly out of its element, containing one-third of this act’s best output since pre-Splinter by a minuscule margin at best. It’s just good old fashioned “meh.”
Seemingly unrelated to the misleadingly grim album art, each song contributes to a 12-piece ramshackle time machine. If you were anticipating their re-recording of Ignition-era artifact “Dirty Magic” or perhaps pondering a forced Dr. Strangelove reference like the one lodged in “Slim Pickens Does The Right Thing And Rides The Bomb To Hell”, you’re in luck; those tracks are the pinnacle of what Days Go By has to offer. Keen listeners might note a Rise And Fall glaze over openers “The Future Is Now” and “Secrets Of The Underground”. There’s also an Americana/Splinter vibe amidst Latin-tinged “OC Guns”, gimmicky summer tune “Cruising California (Bumpin’ In My Trunk)”, and a stripper love song (and “Hit That” throwback) “I Wanna Secret Family (With You)”. An Offspring apologist might claim this mess of a package was surprising, but anybody who’s heard “When You’re In Prison” or “Da Hui” knows better....full text
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