Danko Jones - 'Wild Cat' (AFM Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Ben Hughes   
Monday, 30 January 2017 04:30

Danko Jones - Wildcat artworkDanko Jones should need no introduction to readers of Über Rock. Eight albums into their career and the Toronto three piece show no signs of slowing down anytime soon. New album 'Wild Cat' blasts us into 2017 before the speakers have even recovered from last year's 'Live At Wacken' opus and the previous 'Fire Music' long player. Yep, Danko Jones know how to keep their fans happy and rabid in equal measures.


Let's get this straight, the Mango Kid has more rock in his little finger than you have in your whole body (probably), the guy kicks more ass in 40 minutes than Snake Plissken can in 24 hours! Check out the retro artwork for 'Wild Cat'… now, tell me how cool that would look on a t shirt, right? Like some twisted homage to Sabbath's 'Born Again' and Tygers Of Pan Tang's own 'Wild Cat', that album cover is more ‘70s than a kid in a parka, riding a chopper, sucking a Fab ice lolly… am I right or am I wrong? 


But Danko ain't all about retro.  Sure, his influences straddle the coolest decades of rock 'n' roll music - as so they should - but closer 'Revolution (But Then We Make Love)' tells you exactly what's on Danko's agenda for the day. It all boils down to sex: let’s face it, that's why guys want to be in a band in the first place… to score some chicks (and rock out of course)! And with more sexual innuendos than a Whitesnake album, the girls stand no chance of falling for his charms.


With tongue firmly planted in (someone else's) cheek, Danko proceeds to rip out 11 tracks filled with sex, killer hooks, rocking beats and more sex - and it will keep you coming back for more. I may have only mentioned the ever-present frontman so far, but Danko Jones are a band and they would be nothing without a tight ass rhythm section:  cue long time side-kick and bassist John Calabrese and drummer Rich Knox (who survives for a second album!).


Opener 'I Gotta Rock' is classic Danko: from Knox's opening beats until the final chords ring out it kicks, it just makes you wanna turn the volume up another notch. Yeah, this does the business alright. 'My Little RnR' is as anthemic as they come, rumbling, fuzzy bass, sassy vocals and a killer chorus, it just reminds me what the appeal of AC/DC and Thin Lizzy were in the first place, a future live favourite methinks.


'You Are My Woman' is pure class in all the right ways. A Danko Jones statement of intent, delivered straight from the crotch. A slow building verse leads into a classic Lizzy chorus, it's one of those you will be singing along to the second time that chorus comes around. The sort of tune the Biters were knocking out way before they released a long player. Take note guys, this is how it's done, how could anyone not fall for his charms?


Hats off to producer Eric Ratz who manages to capture the raw, energy and the fire of Danko Jones. A Rick Rubin style feel is just what this band need and get, it reminds me of the first time I heard 'Electric' by The Cult or The Four Horsemen debut album, no over-production here, a back to basic, balls to the wall sound, if you catch my drift. If only more bands could sound this energised and up for it.


And the songs just keep on coming;  'Do This Every Night' a rousing, fist-pumping rocker about life on the road. The cool as fuck breakdown and solo in the title track, and Danko doing his best Gene Simmons impression on 'Success In Bed', more demonic than the demon himself. There's not a bad song here.


'Wild Cat' is a ferocious rock beast, the sound of Thin Lizzy meets Danzig necking Jagerbombs at 2am, and if you don't dig that, then you are reading the wrong website my friend.


When you lose your way in the world of music, or feel that everything is getting a bit generic, sometimes an album comes along that puts you back on track and restores your faith in rock music. The realisation that sometimes all you need is some straight ahead, good time, rock 'n' roll music. Danko Jones are pretty good at doing that, it really is that simple.


‘Wild Cat’ will be released on 3 March.




Danko Jones play The Garage in Highbury on Wednesday 15 March.  Tickets HERE.