25 November 2017

Danko Jones - Wild Cat

Danko Jones is sort of a legend to this blog, and I don’t say that to throw false praise of this act.  As I pointed out on Fire Music (our review linked here), I have been in awe of Mr. Jones and his band for a while.  Ever since the first time I saw him supporting the Backyard Babies, I have been held in rapture, and have been following his music ever since.  Danko Jones (the person and band) are a throwback to the days when rock was full of energy, where everything is at full tilt and the party is always heading toward midnight.  So, you may be asking why it has taken me since March to write this review, well there is a reason for that.  This is actually the second time I have written this review, I had originally written it on my old laptop, but it got lost when that computer passed away.  It's been on my list to re-write, and I have finally gotten time to complete this review.  So, I have now lived with Wild Cat since March, let's find out how time has been to it.

01 – I Gotta Rock

In typical Danko Jones fashion, “I Gotta Rock” is a high-octane, adrenaline-fuelled number, one which is dedicated to the need to rocking the world.  It is fast, furious and full of a passion that is a must for an opening track on a Rock album.  There's no sign that age is getting to the band, in fact, they've not sounded this fierce in a long time to be honest, which makes this is a great opening track.

02 – My Little R’n’R

“My Little R’n’R” is a typical Rock song, one that compares a lover to the soul of Rock ‘n’ Roll, with this lady having the right attitude for him, one that Mr. Jones cannot help but submit to.  It’s a cheeky rock song, but aren’t all rock numbers to a certain degree?  The same could be said about all Pop numbers, Indie numbers, Deep-House numbers, and so on and so forth.  It has that magic factor, the special something that makes it fun and special.  When a song sounds as good as this, all that matters is the passion behind the performance and the fact that it is one of the best songs on this album.   In fact, I would go as far as to say it is one of the best songs of 2017.

03 – Going Out Tonight

“Going Out Tonight” is another energetic rock number, one about wanting to be free and to spend the night out on the town.  It’s the mirror image to “My Little R’n’R”, on this number we hear a cry for freedom, a need to escape and nothing else will do until this is achieved.  It’s a decent number, the riff sounds really good, but the chorus does not match that opening bravado, giving the song a lopsided feeling. 

04 – You Are My Woman

“You Are My Woman” is about finding the perfect partner, the search for that special someone, and it sounds like Thin Lizzy!  Seriously, you can hear the ghost of Phil Lynott on this one, which is never a bad thing. Having that Classic Rock sound has always been DJ’s calling card, which gives it a tribute feeling.  “You Are My Woman” is a fun song which will appeal to his audience, nothing more and nothing less.

05 – Do This Every Night

“Do This Every Night” is a song about how the band is always on the road, how they are on top of their game and how their audience is constantly growing.  This is another example of a song that shouldn’t really work in 2017, but it sounds so relevant at the same time.  I love that Danko Jones create songs such as “Do This Every Night”, sometimes you just need a Rock song to do what it says on the tin…. Rock.

06 – Let’s Start Dancing

“Let’s Start Dancing” is a song which is a little bit too fast for the waltz, but it is aiming for a different type of dancing.  It is a fast, punk rock number with a little of Motorhead to the main riff.  It is either going to annoy or have you moving as if there are ants in your pants.  Either way, I like this song, how can you not enjoy something this fun????

07 – Wild Cat

“Wild Cat” might have given the album its title, but it is also one of the weakest songs on offer here sadly.  It’s not the worst song ever, not even the worse song I have heard in 2017.  It just doesn’t have that lynchpin that makes a great Danko Jones number, there is no connection for me, it was the same on the first review and that feeling has not changed since.  But even a disappointing Danko Jones number is better than a lot of bands out there, at least they still know how to rock.

08 – She Likes It

“She Likes It” is one of the slower numbers of the album, but don’t worry – there is not an acoustic guitar within a hundred miles of this number.  It is another hard-rocking number, one about the relationship between a lady and her partner, filled with sexual energy and sounding a little dirty.  Is it sexist?  I don’t think so, as the song is showing that the lady is in charge, but that is for others to debate.  For me, it is just a class Rock number, nothing more and nothing less.

09 – Success in Bed

Alice Cooper and Kiss – eat your hearts out!  “Success in Bed” is soooooooo cheesy, I mean this is just one of those songs that's stuck in a time warp and would not have been out of place in the 80’s.  It is a big song, about how a man can be good in bed.  Much like “Wild Cat”, it is a weak number.  It is 2017, not 1982 and whilst I can understand why some people might like this, this is still a step too far back for my ears.

10 – Diamond Lady

The penultimate track of this album is called “Diamond Lady”, this time the man is in awe of the woman and is willing to submit to her will.  It is another Hard Rock number, one with love at its heart instead of lust, one about the union of souls and it sounds so much better for it.  Another great song from Danko Jones, it is the total package!

11 – Revolution (But Then We Make Love)

“Revolution (But Then We Make Love)” ends this album with a song about making changes, but then getting your end away.  So close, but let's be honest - they're still thinking with their John Thomas’s.  The music is fun, but it also has those words.  I am not sure if this is to be taken seriously or not, but I still find myself laughing at this in the same way I did when he was the “Mango Kid”.  Cheesy, but well played.

In an age where Rock music has been stated to be over, it’s great to see bands such as Danko Jones are still out there, giving it their all and achieving results in the face of increasing odds against them.  For every serious artist, you need an artist that knows how to get a crowd moving.  There is no questioning their talent, or the fact that they are serious about their art, I know because every time I have seen Danko Jones live, they give their all.  You can also say the same about this record, whilst it’s not the deepest of record, you know it’s just a fun record.  You’re not going to debate what is going on in “She Likes It”, you already know everything about it before it starts to fade out. However, Wild Cat is a primal album, a beast that is designed to get the room moving, the knees quaking and the headbanging.  Yes, there are a couple of tracks that sound out of place in 2017, yes, I might like a bit of change from them, but that’s not the point here.  Wild Cat is saying “if it’s not broken, why try to fix it when it works so well?”  I love this record for its sound, for its ability to play to the strengths of Danko Jones, it quite simply – rocks!

8 out of ten – Oh, now you have my attention, and maybe my time, money and heart

Top track – My Little R’n’R

You can purchase Wild Cat on Amazon here.

You can visit the Danko Jones website here.

You can follow the activities of Danko Jones on Facebook here.

You can stream Wild Cat on Spotify here.

You can stream Wild Cat on Deezer here.

You can stream Wild Cat on Tidal here.

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