When I had initially heard that I was going to be reviewing D4, I thought I was going to be reviewing the latest edition of the much-acclaimed Mighty Ducks series. Emilio Estevez and pee wee league hockey meshed together so well in those fine films that I knew I was in for yet another delightful romp for the entire family. I headed out to B.B. Video and rented the first three Mighty Ducks flicks on DVD so I could take notes and see if the fourth installment would carry the Mighty Ducks torch into the new millennium. It was at the conclusion of the third film that my mailman, Leopold, rang my doorbell. He handed me the package from Hollywood Records and I tore it open immediately. Much to my dismay, my day was about to take a nosedive.
You see, The D4 is actually one of those bands that are being championed as rock revivalists. For those of you who need a history lesson, rock and roll was originally killed by The Prodigy back in 1997 and wasn't brought back until two years ago when The Strokes narrowly beat out At the Drive In in a tournament final at an undisclosed location somewhere in Europe. At the Drive In was so humiliated by the loss, they promptly broke up. True story. I read about it in NME. NME also said that the D4 are "akin to answering the door and being summarily smacked in the face with a cricket bat by a gang of drug crazed Hell's Angels." I couldn't agree with 'em more. If you like this album, then you're the kind of person I'd like to see get assaulted by bikers with a blunt object.
This is your standard, by-the-numbers, sub-par Hives record. It's everything you'd expect. Lots of howling like a wolf, lots of boring, treble-saturated recycled guitar rock, and lots of contrived attitude. Anyone still impressed by songs with titles like "Rocknroll Motherfucker," "Party" and "Come On!" need to go clap along at a Mooney Suzuki show or something.
How low are you, the reader, willing to sink just to continue following the latest lame trends in music? If the answer was, "Very low, Joe," then D4 wants to be the rock and roll soundtrack to your life. So c'mon down to the party. But for me, by the time I reached the ironically-titled fifth track on this album, "Running on Empty," I had heard everything D4 had to offer at least eight or nine times over. There's no attitude. There's no danger. There is, however, a Guitar Wolf cover, "Invader Ace," but that sucks too.
But my biggest problem with the D4 is their lack of brevity. Aren't these kinds of albums supposed to clock in at like 20-something minutes? Why did this album steal almost 42 minutes of my life away from me? Why does it take them 42 minutes to play me one song 13 times? If they follow this up with anything, it should be with a one-song EP, and if I feel like hearing more, I just put it on loop or something. But you should just skip this band altogether. You'd be better off spending your money on a Mighty Ducks DVD.
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