• D.O.A. – Talk – Action = 0

    Released by: Sudden Death Records
    Release Date: May 1, 2010
    List Price: $9.99
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    D.O.A. has been around a long time – since the late seventies, as a matter of fact. It’s not easy for a punk band of that vintage to stay relevant and to keep producing good music, and D.O.A. have had their misfires now and then, but their latest release, Talk – Action = 0, is a pretty damn solid album and a perfect example of why they’re as revered as they are in certain circles. Lead by front man Joe ‘Shithead’ Keithley on guitar and vocals with Floor Tom Jones on drums and Dirty Dan Sedan on bass, the band kick starts the album with the opening track ‘That’s Why I’m An Atheist’ which is a pretty blistering song about the hypocrisy of organized relation and why so many people have problems with it. It also questions the existence of a higher power – D.O.A. like to sing about the simple things in life (hockey and beer are frequent and favorite subjects) but they’re not afraid to get political or even philosophical when the need strikes.

    From there the album acknowledges the band’s take no shit attitude with ‘Rebel Kind’ before moving on to ‘They Hate Punk Rock’ which is a catchy antiestablishment track. It’s hard to take that song’s manifesto all that seriously, what with punk rock having been fairly mainstreamed over the last fifteen years or so, but if anyone’s got the right to bitch, it’s Keithley. Recent economic and political events get covered in tracks like ‘I Live In A Car’ (which is not a cover of the UK Subs track of the same name), ‘Don’t Bank On A Bank,’ ‘Consume! Consume’ and ‘Tyrants Turn In Hell’ which ultimately makes their cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘The Times They Are A-Changin’ feel right at home. An angry Rant against police brutality makes ‘The R.C.M.P.’ a stand out track, getting us pissed off enough that maybe clocking a Mountie doesn’t seem like such a bad idea while ‘Captain Kirk, Spock, Scotty And Bones’ is, as you could probably guess, a song about Star Trek.

    There’s a lot of well channeled anger and energy on this album, the bands seventeenth full length album (if you include Keithley’ solo album, Beat Trash and not including a few compilations that have come out over the years)which gives the material an aged sincerity that goes a long way towards making it as listenable as it is. Each of the guitar heavy tracks is catchy enough that you’ll find yourself singing along before you realize it and if part of the enjoyment comes from the familiarity that these elder statesmen of Canadian punk rock provide, so be it. The band’s sense of humor still shines through really well here and Keithley’s gravelly vocals still fit the material perfectly. The band is in fine form here, the music is tight and if the album has one fault it’s that the fourteen tracks go by really, really quickly. It’s not that they’re particularly short, it’s just that you’ll have a blast listening to it and time flies when you’re having fun. Or something like that. What matters here is that D.O.A.’s latest kicks a whole bunch of ass. It’s fast, it’s funny, it’s pissed off and it’s a testament to what they’ve accomplished and why they’re still around.