- Published on Monday, April 30 2012
- Written by Kate Ferguson
Tenacious D is back to blending rock and comedy after a 6-year album hiatus with Rize of the Fenix. The first single, sharing the album’s title, has already been released, and the full album comes out May 15 through Columbia Records. Jack Black had expressed to David Letterman his ideas about the track “Rize”, hoping to make a workout song of similar intensity to “Eye of the Tiger”. Black’s theatrical vocals are joined by Dave Grohl on the drums, John Konesky on electric guitar, Kyle Gass on vocals and acoustic guitar, and John Spiker doing everything from the organ to the engineering.
On the album’s lyrical content, Black has said, "We're gonna be talking about love, there are gonna be some songs about sex, and there's gonna be songs about food." Sounds about right, although it’s certainly more than that. “Roadie” is a tribute to the hard workers on tour; “Classical Teacher” is a little ditty about a guitar instructor who is hired for Gass; and “39” is a song sung straight to a woman... a 39-year-old woman, of course.
A video for “To Be the Best” has just been released, starring an all-star cast including Tim Robbins, Val Kilmer, Jimmy Kimmel, Maria Menounos, Dave Grohl, Yoshiki Hayashi, and Josh Groban, although there’s not much actual music in the video. Consider it a sketch. The song itself is a super high-energy jam with lyrics like: “Your search for the meaning is very revealing / The power of being is what you’re feeling / You gotta believe that you’re simply the best!”
That’s just the attitude needed to pull off a style that somehow pokes fun at rock in general but also works ferociously on upholding and raising the genre's standards. The group has stayed true to their unique style; in fact, the album also includes a bonus track that might sound familiar -- “5 Needs” was originally performed during the band's cameo in Bio-Dome way back in 1996.
Band members Black and Gass originally met in 1989 when they were both members of a Los Angeles theater group, and they didn’t exactly take to each other. How did they work out their differences? They started a band of course!
Grab the album May 15.
- Kate Ferguson, YH Staff
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