Review Summary: unsatisfactory
I’m going to start off by saying that songwriting is a process that takes effort; it’s hard to create acceptable material when you aren’t showing effort. Each song should feel finished once the listener hears it. Each song should prove that your band is something special; something with potential. It should sound and feel genuine to your audience; re-hashing just won’t cut it. Write songs using the best of your ability and your audience SHOULD appreciate them if not like them initially. They don’t all have to be zingers, just solid enough to show that you’re making some sort of progress. That is the key to being respected as a musician, in my honest opinion.
Let’s move on to a band previously known for writing “acceptable” material, The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza. They are a “core” band, and yes, they do love their breakdowns and their sweeps and their polyrhythms and their anger. Danza wrote some solid material and was slowly approaching the pinnacle of their sound. It wasn’t innovative in any way but it sure was a shade better than their contemporaries. Danza 1 was simply a grind record and a good one at that. Danza 2 was a shift to deathcore, and also a good one at that. Danza 3, though repetitive and breakdown-laden, was a great album and showed the band, as previously stated, approaching their artistic prime.
Let us now move on to the unacceptable. “Danza 4: The Alpha – The Omega” is the sound of a band and its ideas imploding on itself. Still unrelentingly heavy with their 4th release, they’ve also become unrelentingly terrible. Each and every single song sounds akin to the others, chugging along hopelessly and horribly. These aren’t riffs, Josh Travis; these are chugs and sweeps that don’t do much except demonstrate how much you can irritate a listener. Yes, Mr. Freeland, your vocals are harsh but they don’t make the album any less of a failure so stop trying so hard to get vocal nodes. Yeah that’s a bit rant-y but seriously, all they had to do is add melody and maybe different ideas to the blueprint set by Danza 3 to improve their already solid sound.
Moving on to the material, “Behind Those Eyes” kicks the LP off like vintage Danza, charging at the listeners senses. This may not be a problem at first glance, but when you suddenly realize that next 14 tracks do the same, you possibly have an issue on your hands. I admit I do like, “You Won’t” quite a bit but other than that, it’s a pretty mediocre release. Traditional “chug chug” is already very redundant and unless you’re doing something else other than just re-hashed breakdowns, your material is going to sound bland. I listened to this atrocity not knowing whether or not a song ended or began or was simply building to a climax, etc. It was very convoluted and messy, as if it were merely a ***ty Powerpoint presentation fit with cheesy diamond transitions, a barren white background, generic clip art and 12 point Times New Roman font. New releases should generally sound interesting, especially if it’s your GODDAMN SWAN SONG EFFORT.
Also, I’d like to dedicate this paragraph to how absolutely horrible “Hold The Line” is. The preceding track is the choppy, Periphery-wannabe interlude, “The Crossfire”. This song appears at random off of an ambient texture with Jessie Freeland making a dedication to the troops. The already exhausted motif of chugging and hellish “non-riffs” reappears and drives into the senses yet again like a pneumatic drill to the forehead. The listener already has a migraine at this point so it’s literally just irritation instead of something worthwhile. Another thing irritating (get a “irritation” tally going, geez) about this track is the samples. I’m sorry but, no. Please don’t sample the ***ing president. This effectively ruins whatever the track established because it’s so CHEESY and badly executed. The song literally ends abruptly for the samples with a weakly written ambient texture underneath it. “Hold The Line” is easily the worst song on the album; showing how badly songwriting suffered on this release.
Continuing on, the unnecessary elements of this album make it even worse. Why the hell would anyone in their right mind sit and listen to anything “core” for 56 ***ing minutes" That is so unnecessarily long for a “core” album. As an artist, you have to make sure you’re putting your best material out instead of trying to cram it all into a ***ing box resulting in mostly disdain from your fans. Trimming your album down to a digestible size is common sense. Also, I cannot stand the interludes. Interludes as poorly executed as the ones in Danza 4 only add a cumbersome element to the album; pretentiousness. The LP grows increasingly pretentious with these hack-job interludes and also IRRITATES the previously IRRITATED listener. Danza seemingly doesn’t get that irritation plus irritation doesn’t equal a solid release.
In conclusion, I’ve gone on long enough about this failure of an LP. The songwriting blows, the samples are cringe worthy and the interludes just make the already cumbersome listening experience even heftier to tackle due to an added facepalm threshold that is reached from the sheer stupidity of the band. They were solid and if they continued making releases, they could’ve potentially bettered themselves but instead The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza end on the wrong note. Avoid this one at all costs. In the words of Dr. Steve Brule, it's "for your health" if you do.