Eagles of Death Metal

Zipper Down

Written by: HES on 17/02/2016 14:46:38

We plan our lives around the expectation that everything will go relatively according to plan. So when Eagles of Death Metal released their new album “Zipper Down” we planned a review to fit loosely with the forthcoming show on Danish ground in the winter of 2015. As most know by now, things did not go accordingly to plan as the horrible incident in Bataclan changed all plans for both the band, the tour and our general sense of safety of rock shows. Eagles of Death Metal have, however, insisted on continuing through the ordeal and we will follow their footsteps by now reviewing the album “Zipper Down” as originally intended.

“Zipper Down” is the fourth studio album by the provocative band Eagles of Death Metal, the musical mind child of vocalist Jesse Hughes and Josh Hommes of Queens of The Stone Age. In spite of their name, the band plays no death metal, but rather dusty, bluesy variant of garage rock. The lyrical theme is generally borderline obscene, circling sexuality heavily. “Zipper Down” is primarily an exercise in cementing the “Eagles of Death Metal-brand” - you can’t expect the album to revolutionise the music industry and break any genre-defined boundaries, but you can, however, expect to be thoroughly entertained.

The album single “Complexity” is an ode to the simple life, contrasting the conditions of modern life, kindly asking the audience to care less about the attention of others and, to put it in their words, “strut your stuffing”. Listening to Eagles of Death Metal, the lyrics may seem secondary at times, but in them are actually quite the attention to rhyme and alliteration with lines like “When trouble’s up I double up on bubble gum”. These clever puns and humoristic portrayals of Eagles of Death Metal’s counterparts, the creative elite, keeps the otherwise pretty “play by numbers” soundscape interesting.

Three of the songs of the album, including “Complexity” were originally featured on Jesse Hughes solo-project as Boots Electric’s album “Honkey Tonkey” from 2011. One of these songs, the ballad “I Love You All The Time” tries somewhat to tell a tragic love story - but it is very uncharacteristically not well-written and poorly constructed. Adding to the musical patchwork quilt that makes up “Zipper Down” is a cover of Duran Duran’s “Save A Prayer” in a not-very-convincing, borderline-uninspired fashion.

The true winner tracks of “Zipper Down”, are the fresh-off-the-grinder, straight-shooting songs like the dark “The Reverend”, the catchy “Silverlake (K.S.O.F.M.)” and lastly the slow, sexy “Skin-Tight Boogie” where the role-play that makes up the “Eagles of Death Metal”-persona, the rock and roll boogie man, is fully unleashed with lyrics like: “Come close closer still. Some boys won't but you know I will. Can I walk you home? Carry your books so you're not alone”. In other words, where Eagles of Death Metal do their best work, is when they get the closest to the dogma that also locks them to a very narrow point of view, both lyrically and musically. “Zipper Down” is a great attempt at entertaining rock and if you can appreciate that and maybe overlook a little bit of inconsistency, it is a decent, yet not award-winning album.

Download: Complexity, Silverlake (K.S.O.F.M.), Skin-Tight Boogie
For The Fans Of: Queens of The Stone Age, Spidergawd, Boots Electric
Listen: facebook.com/eaglesofdeathmetal

Release date 02.10.2015
Downtown Recordings

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