The Damned Things
Ironiclast


3.5
great

Review

by Eli EMERITUS
December 12th, 2010 | 74 replies | 20,943 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: With their debut, The Damned Things have created one of the most fun and enjoyable Hard Rock albums of the year.

There’s always a fair amount of contention and hype with the creation of every new super group. The conglomeration of different artists from separate acts usually raises questions, as it’s always uncertain as to whether or not the amalgamation of styles and influences will yield a worthy product. While there have been some rather impressive groups in the past, it’s not an easy task to forget about the glut of failed experiments that have permeated the modern music scene. However, when a super group arises that defies expectations, and creates something wholly interesting, it is something special indeed.

As stated previously, it’s a general rule of thumb that one should approach a super group with apprehension, and that sentiment fits The Damned Things perfectly, as the peculiar mashing of Every Time I Die’s Keith Buckley, Anthrax’s Rob Caggiano and Scott Ian, and Fall Out Boy’s Joe Trohman and Andy Hurley, certainly causes one to scratch their head. Perhaps this collection of artists would not seem so strange were it not for the two black sheep hailing from the pop-rock phenomenon, Fall Out Boy. However, as is the case with the rest of the band, Trohman and Hurley fit in ideally with The Damned Things, which is made clear by the pure, unadulterated fun radiating from the band’s debut, Ironiclast.

Ironiclast works perfectly because of its fun factor. While that statement may raise a few eyebrows, The Damned Things have successfully tapped into the spirit and energy of the bombastic and revered Hard Rock bands of the 1970’s, creating music that can actually be considered fun, an idea seemingly lost in this day and age. The Damned Things have deftly captured “enjoyment,” creating a convivial environment, and one, that despite its shortcomings, will leave an impression.

You see, for as cleverly written as Ironiclast truly is, it is far from perfect. Even with all of its good intentions, the album just comes up a little short. It’s a stadium-esque, bluesy, southern rock romp in the form of ten tracks, which unfortunately does little to defy conventions. To put it bluntly, The Damned Things do little, if anything new, and often times fall into the same traps of other modern day Hard Rock bands. The songwriting can at times be a little stereotypical, as the band is want to maintain a painfully strict “verse-chorus” format, while utilizing incredibly predictable guitar riffs as well. For as quick paced and catchy as “Handbook for the Recently Deceased” and “Bad Blood” really are, they won’t be remembered for breaking new ground, while on the other hand, tracks like “Friday Night” seem to hop onto a riff-roller coaster and seemingly never get off.

Thankfully, Ironiclast is a testament to how the unbridled exuberance of a band and its members-whose jovial catharsis is nigh palpable in audible form- can essentially make a record into something more than a mere sum of its parts. After all, the album does little to stand heads and shoulders above its contemporaries. However, the brilliant cohesiveness of the band does wonders for the sound. For those familiar with Every Time I Die, Keith Buckley’s mellower, rockier tone may come as a surprise. It is telling of his abilities as a vocalist, as he is able to drastically alter his sound while maintaining the same passion and energy found on his main project. The rest of the band melds perfectly as well, with no one taking center stage. While some of the tracks are conducive to incessant riffing, the guitarists actually manage to write some damn great parts. Chock full of variety and poise, Coggiano and Trohman’s writing often times can be quite intriguing. Yet the excellence is spread throughout the rest of the band as well, with each member at one time or another really grabbing the listener’s attention with one or more great moments. Unfortunately, Buckley's renowned lyrical prowess isn't up to snuff with much of his other material, but still good in its own right. Yet with such impressive artists well versed in what it means to be in a band, The Damned Things sound like they were made to be a group, rather than a collection of artists from separate acts.

Ironiclast is an impressive debut from a band who really shouldn’t be as good as they actually are. That being said, The Damned Things have crafted one of the most fun, energetic, and catchy Hard Rock albums of 2010, encompassing every excellent aspect of the genre from the past thirty years. Sure, it isn’t a megaton bomb, busting down doors and ripping apart conventions, but when an album is this goddamn fun, it’s difficult to care.



Recent reviews by this author
Saintseneca Dark ArcHave a Nice Life The Unnatural World
Thee Silver Mount Zion Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light on EverythingFell Voices Regnum Saturni
Hammock Oblivion HymnsMount Eerie Pre-Human Ideas
user ratings (195)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
Alex Carlson (4)
Expectations be damned: Ironiclast is an ambitious record from a group of talented and remarkably mu...

mrodizzle (2.5)
Damn it (I need to think of a summary)...

Jim Thompson (3.5)
A little fun and passion can be oh so good......


Comments:Add a Comment 
Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 12th 2010



10585 Comments


I expected this to suck, but hey it's actually pretty great.

Digging: United Nations - The Next Four Years

Mordecai.
December 12th 2010



8270 Comments


are the lyrics up to the usual Keith Buckley standard?

Mordecai.
December 12th 2010



8270 Comments


fart.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 12th 2010



10585 Comments


Not really. Better than most though...

dcha
December 12th 2010



990 Comments


are the lyrics up to the usual Keith Buckley standard?

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 12th 2010



10585 Comments


Ima put that in ma review...

dcha
December 12th 2010



990 Comments


The songs I heard before release were way catchy, but the rest of this wasn't as cool.

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 12th 2010



7140 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Excellent review Xeno, I really enjoyed reading it, and am actually intrigued by this release - may in fact check it out. That said, I feel obliged to let you be aware of two things:

i.) You're missing a period at the end of the review.
ii.) To be honest, the introductory paragraph (and about half of the next) kinda drags a little. It actually sort of struggles to sustain the reader's interest, but I realize that in this case it was absolutely necessary for you to define the context from which this album emerges. But after that it's absolutely fine, with your flow from point to point being as well thought-out, clean, and smooth as I have come to expect from you. Still, I just thought you'd like to have an objective opinion about the review's overall effectiveness as a construct.

You're really leaving me far behind in total review count - for holy crap this is your 63rd LOL.

Bitchfork
December 12th 2010



7584 Comments


Oh I hate when reviews start off with sentences of that length only to tell us something fluffier than a guinea pig's cooch.

Bitchfork
December 12th 2010



7584 Comments


but i hate it more when xenophanes doesn't review a certain ep i told him to.

SCREAMorphine
December 12th 2010



1751 Comments


Good review, I'm going to check this out



POS

JWT155
December 12th 2010



9205 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Have a pos Xeno :D glad I persuaded you to check this out.

greg84
Staff Reviewer
December 12th 2010



7315 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

At first I thought the album is lacklustre, but then it started to grow on me. Good review.

Digging: Dog Fashion Disco - Sweet Nothings

AggravatedYeti
December 12th 2010



7684 Comments


surprised that spam lasted as long as it did.

nice review per usual Xeno. Cannot say I'll be in any rush to grab this though.

pizzamachine
December 12th 2010



12571 Comments


Great review obviously, pos.

bloc
December 12th 2010



34675 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Did not enjoy

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

Jethro42
December 12th 2010



12377 Comments


pos

Gyromania
December 12th 2010



15199 Comments


Great review dude.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 12th 2010



10585 Comments


Thank you everyone, I appreciate it.


Bitchfork, I'll get to it eventually....

AggravatedYeti
December 12th 2010



7684 Comments


keep not reviewing Austin's EP for me pleeeeaasseee.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy