Masked delinquents Hollywood Undead‘s fourth offering, ‘Day Of The Dead’, is enough to disappoint those who already take great displeasure in their signature mash of alt rock and hip-hop. ‘Day Of The Dead’ is dismally characterised by its cringe inducing lyrics and painful mishmash of ill-suited genres.
Venturing into club territory could be seen as a bold and audacious ploy for the rap rock six-piece, but instead it communicates as an embarrassing shot at becoming more accessible. ‘War Child’ and ‘Party By Myself’ both contend a radio-friendly, club vibe with disastrous results, as it’s challenging to devise its target audience.
Although not awfully flawed, ‘Dark Places’ rests on the same piano ostinato throughout, which doesn’t charm enough interest to carry its own song. The band even manages to massacre Kasabian‘s 2006 hit ‘Shoot The Runner’ in the lifeless and stale ‘Disease’.
Lyrics for the most part are weak and depthless, particularly in ‘Live Forever’, with lines such as “Everybody wants to live forever / But who I am to say / I just want a life we will remember / We’re living for today”. ‘Disease’ is also plagued with shallow, meaningless lyrics, “We’re born to live / We’re born to die / We’re forced to swallow these pills and to never ask why”.
The only redeeming qualities come in the form of ‘Usual Suspects’, ‘How We Roll’, and ‘Day Of The Dead’, which are conveniently placed at the start of the album, perhaps in an absurd attempt to delay feelings of buyer’s remorse.
‘Usual Suspects’ makes great use of rock and electronic elements and is encompassed with some engaging rap verses from Funny Man. Although still lyrically mindless, it’s extremely catchy and a strong opening to the record. ‘How We Roll’ is another wildcat anthem, with J-Dog boasting the badass lyrics “Get back when we enter the room / Get back ’cause we digging your tomb / Get back, what the fuck you gonna do?”.
‘Day Of The Dead’ is the sound of a band losing their way and is depthless, uninspired and drained. The songwriting feels incredibly rushed, as hooks are recycled throughout and the lyrics remain thoughtless and unrelatable. Hollywood may be undead, but the same can no longer be said with certainty for the nu-metal revivalists.
Written by Kieran Harris