“Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace,” the eighth studio album from the OC punksters, is an impressive new set of songs from one of rock’s most exciting and enduring bands. The Offspring entered the studio with legendary producer Bob Rock (Metallica, The Cult) to record 12 new songs culled from the most productive songwriting period in the band’s history. This is the band’s first full-length studio release in four and a half years, the longest gap between The Offspring’s studio albums to date. ‘Hammerhead’ the 1st single from “Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace” debuted at #5 on the U.S Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and #18 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks respectively. The Offspring has performed over 1000 shows and they have sold more than 34 million albums worldwide, including their 1994 release “Smash,” which more than a decade after its release remains the highest-selling album of all time on an independent label.
“Half-Truism” – A long missing, and desired, Offspring song. This is their core strength–pop/punk. The chorus is easy to remember and sing-a-long to. Could it be a comeback?
“Trust In You” – This sounds like a retread, but it still holds up to most of their hits. It’s a fun pop/punk track. They still have it.
“You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid” – It’s a bit wacky: “dance, f**ker dance, you never had a chance.” But wacky or not its catchy as hell.
“Hammerhead” – The typical big chorus and harmony–just not as strong of a chorus as previous iterations of Offspring songs.
“Takes Me Nowhere” – An average filler track.
“Kristy, Are You Doing Ok?” – A song about sexual molestation isn’t anything to take lightly. I just wish the song matched the sentiment.
“Lets Hear It From Rock Bottom” – This song could have been left off the album.
There are a few songs that left me unsure on how to react. “Fix You” doesn’t really sound like The Offspring. It’s a ballad that sounds like it could have been sung by Fuel or a similar band. But its not corny nor does it diminish the punk flavor of The Offspring. After a few listens its obvious its an lovely song; the question how do feel about The Offspring singing it? I don’t have an answer.
Frankly, I’m extremely surprised by this new Offspring offering. “Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace” is good from beginning to end. There are a few songs that could have been left behind but the songs aren’t terrible they just don’t hold up to the better songs. The Offspring have proven themselves to be as good as advertised.