Six years, two men. Only one thing can unfold, and that is a brand new album by the world renowned mock rock duo; Tenacious D. Since the release of sophomore album and film soundtrack “The Pick of Destiny”, the band faced hard times following poor reviews and difficulties in morale following the media glorifying Jack Black’s position in the band over lead guitarist, Kyle Gass due to Black’s status as a Hollywood actor. Luckily they managed to pull themselves together and have produced their third studio album, along with the likes of Dave Grohl (Drums), John Konesky (Electric Guitar) and John Spiker (multi instruments) as their backing band.

Opening with the soaring title track “Rise of the Fenix”, the lyrics dictate their own awareness at how close they were to ending the band, specifically from the line “when the Pick of Destiny was released it was a bomb”. To everyone’s delight, they are back and stronger than before with thunderstruck guitar riffs and spectacular vocal work from Black evident within the first half of the opening track. Inevitably, this album contains hilarious sexual content in the form of “Low Hangin Fruit” where juicy instrumentals coincide with Black’s flamboyant lyrics, but comical interlude “Classical Teacher” takes the gold for tongue in cheek comedy with a supposed guitar teacher for Kyle Gass turning out to be Jack Black molesting his band mate, to prove a point that they will do “whatever it takes” to be the “best f**king band”.

In this classic Tenacious D album format, one minute you’re laughing and the next you’re solemnly in awe of the pure talent on display. Songs such as “Deth Starr” and “Roadie” truly prove that even though Jack Black isn’t getting any younger, his vocal strengths are as potent as ever. A particular highlight to the record comes in the form of “The Ballad of Hollywood Jack and The Rage Cage” which unfolds the tale of the bands fallout following the release of The Pick of Destiny. Closing with what could be an 80’s montage anthem, “To Be The Best” and “39” which echoes the likes of Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, and Bruce Springsteen; it is evident that Tenacious D have concocted a record which not only tickles your funny bone, but delivers on all levels of musical variety and execution.

Some will say that this album was the final straw for Tenacious D, but I say this is only the beginning of a new chapter for them. Slots at Download Festival and a triple booking at Brixton Academy will see this band mesmerise the UK this year, so make sure you get to see at least one of their showings.
Long live the D.

“Rise of the Fenix” is released on 15th May.

Track List
Rize of the Fenix
Low Hangin’ Fruit
Classical Teacher
Deth Starr
Flutes and Trombones
Ballad of Hollywood Jack and the Rage Kage
Throw Down
Rock Is Dead
They Fucked Our Asses
To Be the Best


Words by George Fullerton.

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