It’s been eight long years since Danish rock powerhouse D-A-D unleashed their last full length, Dis.Nee.Lan.Daft.Erd.Ark (2011). While the camp hasn’t been quiet since, there was not much pointing towards a follow-up until very recently. After rigorous touring, a bland solo effort from front man Jesper Binzer, and more touring, the long awaited follow-up finally dropped, in the form of A Prayer for the Loud. Right out of the gate, these guys aren’t about reinventing the wheel, but they’re also not about dragging through the same old. Every album is very much about where they are right then and there, and so is the case here. Much of the weight, almost closing in on a metal sound and the keyboard presence found on previous few albums have been toned down for a sound more akin to Riskin’ It All (1991), without entirely sacrificing the blend of emotionally weighted heaviness where appropriate, for a sort of intermediate style.
A Prayer for the Loud is not its predecessors, for good or ill. But it’s comfy and reliable in the right respects and immediately makes a home for itself in the discography. It pulls the neat tricks D-A-D are so well known for while alternating between the signature comedic touch, celebrating rock n roll and tugging at the heart strings. With the first few listens, the album perhaps isn’t as drawing in as the previous two, but with a little time, the signature Jacob Binzer leads and the oddly charming bass lines of Stig ‘Stigge Nasty’ Pedersen take unexpected twists and go about a grittier, scaled back sound that works so really well. Starting off with single Burning Star, the album takes off on a high note with a punch to the jaw; if you thought they were done - you were wrong. It’s a refreshing, rock n roll tune with rolling riffing and Jesper Binzer showing no sign of age in his signature vocals. Big brother Binzer also pulls some cool tricks, nifty solos and does his usual, laid back self with style. The leads in tracks like The Real Me or Nothing Ever Changes roll off the string, while heavier stuff like Musical Chairs work well alongside the rhythm section.
Fresh rockers like the title track with its weighty chorus and Riskin It All like rhythms mingle with tracks like The Real Me and No Doubt About It which could fit on any of their 2000’s albums. There’re a couple of ballads here too; A Drug for the Heart and If the World Just (the latter admittedly a semi ballad, with some sweet guitar soloing). Neither are among the greatest they’ve made, but fit the bill here with a simple style and Jesper Binzer going a softer style while Jacob Binzer’s lead guitars hold the torch for a melodic touch. Whether you like the good old D-A-D of nineteenhundredandyesterday, the blues rocky punch of the first albums or if you like the melodic touch on the later few, A Prayer for the Loud will have something to rock your boat. It might take a few listens to really warm up to it, but this album proves that D-A-D still haven’t lost their touch for energetic rock n roll, no compromises and no beating around the bush; on that sky the Danes are still a bright burning star.
Standout tracks: Burning Star, The Real Me, Musical Chairs, If the World Just