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F U L L . R E V I E W S

Danko Jones
Fire Music

Company: Bad Taste
Release: 2015
Genre: Hard Rock
Reviewer: Bubba J

  • Good record that has a few warts

  • "Fire Music" is a decent album by a good band. That being said, there are moments of brilliance juxtaposed with moments of "what?". I can jam this record all day but unfortunately there are a few snoozers that I'd compulsively skip.

    Case in point - the album opener "Wild Woman" is flat in comparison to much more solid material that luckily follows soon after. The lyric seems unfinished with one repeated phrase and point. Musically, it's a solid driver, but it's not enough to fight the calling "next" button...

    Now, onto the brilliance..."The Twisting Knife", "Gonna Be a Fight Tonight" and "Body Bags" deliver a triumphant drive and power that embodies how great this entire set could be. These are blistering rockers that have fist pumping, sing-a-long moments and fiercely tortured lyrics ("I'm gonna bury them alive, so I can hear them scream" -Body Bags). These three songs evoke influences like Thin Lizzy, Metallica and Misfits with dramatic pauses and break-neck paces. "Live Forever" is a well rounded track; cool guitar melody bits and crunching, stomp-box bass build a tasty texture for this radio-ready cousin of the Cult's best singles.

    "Do You Wanna Rock" and "Getting Into Drugs" are by far the lowest point on this set. The latter being a lame duck all around and the former an unfortunate single choice that reeks of trying too hard with it's inexplicably rushed vocal bits and uninspired lyric.

    "Watch You Slide" has a killer guitar pull-off/string skipping riff that runs a thousand miles per hour. The drums lock into a killer groove that differs from the rest of this package, giving it a refreshing shift of gear from the previous two tracks. Again, those inexplicable rushed vocals peek in, a crack in the armor of this otherwise smart and capable track.

    "I Will Break Your Heart", "Piranha" and "She Ain't Comin' Home" round out the set with style as they progressively drive home what's best about this record. A shuffle groove, then a light speed burner, followed by a great closing track that would have made a great single. The closer capitalizes on the sing-a-long feel of some of the greatest moments as well as features a fine emotive vocal by Jones and some of the more anthemic dynamics this set has to offer.

    Overall a good record that has a few warts, I will be revisiting this record more in the coming weeks for the good stuff, but I'll keep a sharp eye out for the skip button.

    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

    Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

    Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

    The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.

    All reviews for Danko Jones:
    Fire MusicDanko Jones
    Bubba J12/17/2015

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