If Seinfeld was a show about nothing, Tenacious D must be its musical corollary. Like that famed sitcom, this comedic duo line their songs with self-referential jokes and puffed-up slices of everyday life. Well, everyday for a couple stoner wannabes channeling metal’s epic grandeur and melodrama onto acoustic guitars. The resulting cartoonish excess runs from odes (to roadies and Ronnie James Dio) to profane-sexual-discussions-turned-weepy-power-ballad (“Fuck Her Gently”) and self-mocking self-mythologizing, which pretty much describes 2006’s entire commercial/critical movie/soundtrack bomb The Pick of Destiny. On Tenacious D’s long-awaited return album, Rize of the Fenix , they’re properly chastised. “They fucked our asses,” frontman Jack Black sings on the song of the same name. “They fucked them hard/But we kept our indie cred for the whole nine yards.” Yeah, that salves the pain. While not quite a return to form, Fenix is moving in the right direction.
Sat., June 30, 8pm. $45. With The Sights. Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing, Columbus Blvd. and Spring Garden St. 215.629.3200. livenation.com
PW's Music Issue 2014