Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Offspring's edgy songs contain four-letter words and a lot of violent metaphors. On the plus side, the lyrics are so clever -- and sometimes barely audible -- that they don't come across as really offensive. Songs also explore the dark side of relationships, self-image, and world events with a slight glimmer of redemption and hope.
What's the story?
RISE AND FALL, RAGE AND GRACE, The Offspring's eighth studio album (and first full-length release since 2003), delivers a dozen new, well-written songs with all of the group's ironic wit and punk-pop energy intact. Songs explore the dark side of relationships, self-image, and world events with just a glimmer of redemption and hope -- and that makes all the difference.
Is it any good?
There are enough swear words (f--k, s--t, asshole) to rate a parental-advisory sticker, but vocals are low in many of the mixes, and not only do the obligatory rants not take over; they're sometimes barely audible. The lyrics are also so good that this may be one instance where an occasional expletive that you're kid has already heard isn't too detrimental. Some of the cynically morbid imagery ("If we don't make it alive/well it's a hell of a good day to die") and violent metaphor might be disturbing, but if it makes it any better, it's always clever. The deeper, more subtle message -- promoting self-expression, whether in the form of songwriting or any other art, as a way to handle frustration and pain -- is the real take-home value for families.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the song "Kristy, Are You Doing Okay?" How do you communicate with a friend or family member who seems to be troubled? Are there special techniques you can learn for helping or is just being there, and being a good friend, enough?