Keven's Music Review: TENACIOUS D – Rize of The Fenix
Published: May 21, 2012 - 7:42am
It's been six years since The D unleashed an album and technically that record was just a soundtrack to their much criticized feature film 'The Pick of Destiny'. If you want to get scientific, Tenacious D's last 'true' studio album was their 2001 self titled debut. Eleven years between records? Come on Jables and Rage Kage – don't do this to me again.
'Rize of The Fenix' is short, to the point hard rock simmering in a fine comedic juice. What has become very apparent with Tenacious D is that they've had to significantly up their game now that the comedic music scene is far more competitive than it used to be over a decade ago. With The Lonely Island and Flight of the Concords being as awesome as they are, Jack Black and Kyle Gass had to go back to the drawing board and come up with a master plan to take the throne back.
Now, The D will always be silly, most evident on the skit where Black disguises himself as a Spanish music teacher in order to hump an uncomfortable KG, waking him up creatively. I have noticed a dose of maturity however, but really the album still closes with an opus about dating a 39-year-old woman who goes down on Jables for braces. Black and Gass are funny and their comedy is always original, applying itself extremely well to their rock-opera influenced tracks. 'Rize of the Fenix' even details the woes after their film 'The Pick of Destiny' became a box office flop.
If I had one gripe, it would be that 'Rize of the Fenix' is too short of a record. I wanted so much more and I can't bear to think that there will be another decade between albums. The musicianship has increased significantly here and The D has always been rock solid in the skills department but in order to throw down with the youngins, they've really amped up their game in 2012. 'Low Hangin Fruit' is a classic and 'Roadie' is a song that every bearded, amp carrying tattooed, bus camping bastard will be singing for years to come.
Another interesting note is how Black's vocals have taken on this sort of Springsteen growl at times, because although he still hits the high notes with ease, Jables sounds more hoarse than usual when he goes low. It's not a bad thing, it's just unusual. Also, the way Black sings simple words like 'Anus' (Eh-Nose) and 'Yes' (Yay-ce), is hilarious. Tenacious D will always be the kings of rock comedy and 'Rize of The Fenix' is proof that The D truly are the best on that playing field.
1. "Rize of the Fenix"
2. "Low Hangin' Fruit"
3. "Classical Teacher" (Skit)
5. "Deth Starr"
7. "Flutes & Trombones" (Skit)
8. "The Ballad of Hollywood Jack and the Rage Kage"
9. "Throw Down"
10. "Rock Is Dead"
11. "They F***ed Our Asses"
12. "To Be the Best"