|D.A.D – ‘The Overmuch Box’ (EMI)|
|Written by Johnny H|
|Friday, 12 February 2010 10:29|
Spanning the entire career of Denmark's premier rock band D.A.D, this box set spans their twenty-five year studio output, in a lavishly produced twelve CD set (ten albums plus two CD's exclusive to this release) that is the only way to experience 'cow punk' at its very best.
Lovingly repackaged in full mini LP sleeves, just the way the Japanese collectors market does so perfectly, this collection is topped off with a 164 page booklet illustrated by the band's bassist Stig Pedersen and housed in a hard card outer, just like a mini flight case.
Kicking the collection off in 1985 as Disneyland After Dark (and prior to the lawsuit that would later see the name abbreviated) the first of the exclusive CD's is the 'Standin' On The Never Never EP', that when rolled into the following year's 'Call Of The Wild' album and 97's 'DAD Draws a Circle' fully encompasses D.A.D's first stage of musical evolution. The self styled 'cow punk' independent label sound was very much a crystal clear vision of exactly what was influencing the guys back then, with a much more new wave/punk/hard rock sound than you would expect, as evidenced on tracks like 'Jackie O' and 'Black Crickets' from each of the full albums.
By the time 'No Fuel Left For The Pilgrims' and 'Riskin' It All' emerged via Warner Bros either side of the turn of the decade we came to hate as the nineties, D.A.D had morphed into a beast of a stadium Rock 'n' Roll band with tracks like 'Bad Craziness' and 'Sleeping My Day Away' perfectly melding the band's clear country guitar sound with AC/DC like stomping rhythms. Worldwide success was surely imminent, before Grunge came along and left everyone, just a little but too fucking morbid.
After a long period of silence, it was with 1995's 'Helpyourselfish' that found D:A:D (note the slight change in the band name) on EMI for the first time (via Chrysalis in the UK) and looking to toughen up their sound, the band in turn produced possibly their most left of field and 'difficult' album, and this was definitely the sound of the band growing up the hard way. 'Helpyourselfish' was also the first album that listening back to now, with the benefit of hindsight, that singer/guitarist Jepser Binzer moved his vocal style more towards the style he would continue for the rest of the band's career. A bizarre mix of Steven Tyler, Sting and Ray Simms (Google it if you want to know what I'm on about). This style was never more evident than on lead track 'Empty Head's' from 1997's 'Simpatico'. This was also a much smoother album than it's predecessor and went largely unnoticed in the UK, as it didn't fit it with our media's then obsession with Nu Metal.
In 1999 the band experienced their first personnel change when drummer Peter Lundholm Jensen decided to retire from the music business, it also saw the band move to their current moniker of D-A-D and so marked the beginning of their current stage in their musical evolution. Adding Laust Sonne to the drum stool for 2000's 'Everything Glows' the band's more commercial phase of music continued to develop into 2002's 'Soft Dogs', each album having a more Aerosmith-y/earthy type of sound especially on tracks like 'Nineteenhundredandyesterday' and 'The Truth About You'.
Whilst 2005's 'Scare Yourself' and 2008's 'Monster Philosophy' saw a slight return to the more low slung guitar histrionics of the band's turn of the nineties sound, the musical sensibilities gained through the years were never going to see D-A-D returning to the comic book antics from those days. That is why this set's last and second exclusive CD 'Behind The Seen' is such a perfect ending to this collection. Sweeping up eighteen rare, unreleased, or B-side tracks, spanning the band's entire career, this was originally released as a 500 pressing vinyl album at the end of 2009. Tracks like 'Motorlove' (recorded pre 'Riskin' It All') sit perfectly alongside newer tracks such as 'Burn The Bridges' (an outtake from 2008's 'Monster Philosophy') and bring the band's evolution right back around full circle.
D-A-D are a band that seldom plays the UK these days, and I have them pretty near the top of my ever decreasing list of MUST SEE bands. Until that day (and hopefully Joe Perry doesn't get in there to steal Jesper in the meantime) I'll make do with this damn fine and very reasonably priced box set, that just happens to make the wait for that elusive live show that little bit more enticing.