The Offspring
Days Go By


3.5
great

Review

by Raul Stanciu STAFF
June 26th, 2012 | 65 replies | 11,438 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The Offspring slowly realize that a change in sound isn't necessary, as they are at their most effective when covering their own ground.

Since releasing their Greatest Hits compilation, The Offspring have suffered from a lack of musical direction. There's clear evidence that major success in the mid 00s of fellow bands such as Green Day, Foo Fighters and even Coldplay left a big impact on The Offspring. As a result, their previous record was an attempt at a comeback by creating something big, heavy yet accessible, but they couldn't concentrate all their new influences into their own sound. This way, Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace, ended up as a carbon copy of each of the bands mentioned and themselves.

So now, four years later, besides the damage done by the band to their own fan base, the expectations lowered to a minimum with the aid of the first two singles released, the title track, "Days Go By" and "Cruisin' California (Bumpin' In My Trunk)", the former being the sound of a tired band and bearing a strong resemblance to Foo Fighters' "Times Like These", while the latter is another failed attempt, this time at a Katy Perry spoof. The track itself is slightly better than such an abomination as "The Worst Hangover Ever", but coming from The Offspring is just disappointing. In the end, the listener won't know if this is really intended as a spoof or is just a masked attempt at a summer hit.

However, despite the weak singles, the album is their most solid work since Splinter (and yeah Splinter is good). The first two tracks opening Days Go By are their hardest hitting in a long time. Both "The Future Is Now" and "Secrets From The Underground" reflect more or less the overall theme of time passing us by. Even if Dexter Holland's lyrics aren't his most effective, this time he actually has something to say, instead of just giving a shot at arena sized laments and cheesy choruses. Along with their trademark frantic riffing and sharp leads, there are some gentle piano touches that really blend in the whole mix, at the same time being the best thing that came off Rise And Fall. Also, contrary to popular belief, "Secrets From The Underground" is much rather a confession related to the danger on the streets these days, more precisely the violent nature of the people and all the gang wars going on ("Hey you, no, I'm not gonna go away/I've got something more to say/ Kicking, screaming, knocks you down, it knocks you down/ Hey you, you, underneath, we'll tear you down/Secrets from the underground, anger's gone so far "). Even if the lyrics are somewhat vague, The Offspring don't expect people to think of them as an underground band after 18 years of mainstream exposure. Nevertheless, these two songs are really good and start the album really strong.

From here on, the quality of the tracks constantly goes up and down. "Turning Into You" is a nice addition to Days Go By, as it showcases the fact that The Offspring can still bring something good to the table without copying their mid 90s output. The track constantly shifts gears, it doesn't sound forced and is really enjoyable as a whole. This is the way most of the material on Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace should have sounded if done right. On the negative side, "All I Have Left Is You" doesn't succeed as a power ballad mainly because Dexter's lyrics are superficial and uninteresting, in the same way "Kristy, Are You Okay?" ended up as a 10 year old lament, despite the fact that it touches a delicate subject. The band proved they can churn out powerful ballads (see "Gone Away", which technically isn't a ballad, but the lyrics really bring the track to life), but lately they seem forced, as if the records are meant to have some sort of ballads.

Another highlight on Days Go By is the reworked version of "Dirty Magic", off their 1992 record, Ignition. The sound quality is definitely better, the guitars are more audibly layered and overall, the band really made justice to such an underrated song. Also, "Dividing By Zero" is the closest this record comes to old school Offspring: with a great, catchy melody and powerful guitars, the track really brings out great memories as well as nostalgia in between fans. Even though infamous producer Bob Rock is at the helm once again, this time he kept his overpolishing tendencies to a lower level. However, it would be of great benefit if they ditched Rock for future releases.

Overall, Days Go By ends up as a solid record only because there are traces of The Offspring again and not a band that tries to copy others. Still, at the same time, it offers some memorable tracks worthy of putting next to earlier material and a hope for more in the following years. It seems that The Offspring slowly realize that a change in sound isn't necessary, as they are at their most effective when covering their own ground.



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user ratings (289)
Chart.
2.9
good
other reviews of this album
Green Baron (2.5)
Days go by, and so will The Offspring....

TH3FU (3)
Cruising California In A Wheelchair...

Rastapunk (2.5)
A low release with a few fun or good songs that makes it average....

Alex Carlson (2)
One of the 90's biggest punk bands officially hits middle-age....


Comments:Add a Comment 
SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
June 25th 2012



4337 Comments


Good review. POS'd.

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
June 26th 2012



48541 Comments


The 2 songs I hard made me want to kill myself and so did the last album so not checking this out

Digging: The Hotelier - Home, Like NoPlace Is There

Rastapunk
June 26th 2012



661 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I agree on CAlifornia Cruising, but The Worst Hangover is plain awesome dude :D

The only thing I don't agree with is that they copied other sounds from popular bands, but other than
that, good review!

Owantjaaaa
June 26th 2012



2781 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Good review, pos'd
This isn't as bad as everyone says, this is waaaay better than rise and fall

Digging: The Body - I Shall Die Here

Da11thMytrillSphere
June 26th 2012



546 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

After that shitty video of Cruising California I dind't expect that the general rating will be 2,8, I expected a 2 or a 2,4.Anyways I'm going to check this in a near future.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
June 26th 2012



3159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Thanks guys!
@Rastapunk - I don't know, I really dislike that track, especially when listening to Splinter as a whole. It comes in between two serious, great tracks. It ruins the album. Also, listen to Rise and Fall and American Idiot (the songs) back to back, the rhythm is almost the same. Fix You is the same idea with Coldplay's track with the same title and Trust In You is Smash all over again.
@Trebor - I understand you man. I had little expectations but it grew on me.

Digging: Amplifier - Echo Street

Rastapunk
June 26th 2012



661 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

On this album they have adopted the mainstream rock of Fall out boys... Yeah we can hear traces of their roots but this is their turning point. RFRG was closer to being Offspring than this one.

Da11thMytrillSphere
June 26th 2012



546 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

If this sound like FOB I should avoid this album, I can't stand FOB . I'm going to hear smash right now.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
June 26th 2012



3159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

For me, RFRG is at opposite ends. I really like some of the tracks, but at the same time I dislike half the album. Here's everything is more in the middle.
@Da11thMytrillSphere - If you listened to RFRG (or at least the singles), you'll see similarities in sound, but here over half of the album rocks and sounds more like The Offspring

Da11thMytrillSphere
June 26th 2012



546 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

@insomniac15

Well, I should give to that album an opportunity, RFRG was average but it has some decent tunes, the thing that scared was the comment which said that the sound of this work was reminiscent of FOB works.


insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
June 26th 2012



3159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I find this slightly better than Rise And Fall because is The Offspring doing their shit again, even if only for about half an album. You can check it out here: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/album-premiere-the-offspring-stretch-out-on-days-go-by-20120619

Listen at least to The Future Is Now, Secrets From The Underground, Turning Into You, OC Guns, Dirty Magic, Dividing By Zero and Slim Pickens.

Rastapunk
June 26th 2012



661 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Listen to the older records up to RFRG and listen to this. Tell me how they still sound the same?

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
June 26th 2012



3159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Throughout the years they started including more and more midtempo tracks, until this feature was incorporated in their sound. I don't think they'll ever release another Smash or Ixnay anyway. One problem that started in the 00s was Dexter's lyrics, which gradually became bland and uninteresting. Plus, there are some tracks that sound like old school Offspring such as Dividing By Zero, Future Is Now or Secrets From The Underground.

Rastapunk
June 26th 2012



661 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Then we agree, they've made another sound with this album

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
June 26th 2012



3159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Agreed :D. Still, it's better to have different points of view. This way I stood and thought about their career and listened to various songs trying to see where these new ones would fit.

PapyrIsGood
June 26th 2012



25 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Hey this is a very well-written review man, and I checked out your others too. Props.

CutMan
June 26th 2012



1744 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Better than "The Worst Hangover Ever"? No. I'm not defending that song, but at least it wasn't a rip off of a Katy Perry song by way of your dad's washed up cover band who perform only in the garage.

But, yeah, this is a good album despite the awful of that song.

theacademy
June 26th 2012



27672 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Worst Hangover Ever rules

theacademy
June 26th 2012



27672 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Ballroom scene, but the fire underneath, gonna eat u all alive, gonna bring u to ur knees GO!

Owantjaaaa
June 26th 2012



2781 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Worst Hangover Ever rules

truth



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