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Aural Pleasure Review

Tenacious D: 'Rize of the Fenix'

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Jables and Kage are back after a six-year album gap that last left us with cult favorite The Pick of Destiny. In that release, the D showed off their guitar chops. Fenix, however, revels in their versatility. The skit preceding "The Ballad of Hollywood Jack and the Rage Kage" is textbook Jack Black humor, with a string of obscenities that fuse rock and comedy in perfect D-fashion. Fenix is light on the skits, however, opting instead to slip in brief ditties between the lengthier anthems. "To Be the Best" is hilarious and evokes memories of Bonnie Tyler's classic "Holding Out for a Hero," but timing in at only a minute leaves an unfulfilling void that marks the album as a whole. Too often the songs blend together and only shock you back to attention with lyrics like "Not going out with no 19-year-old chickadees no more, from now on I got my 39-year-old whore," sung in Black's best Springsteen bravado. Tenacious D's self-aware satire has always been an acquired taste, but after six years even long time fans may wish Fenix had been given more time to rise.

★★ ½ (out of 5 stars)

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