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I've never been a crossover die-hard, though I really dig Suicidal Tendencies, Cro-Mags and some old DRI, which is the case. Still I can proudly say I just can't get enough of this album. I also enjoyed some previous stuff, especially that "Dealing With It" masterpiece, but what we have here is their most solid album to my ears, since it involves those over the top punkish riffs which oblige you to mosh and some other mid-paced yet thrashy ones to bang your head with until it explodes. At the very start of it you can hear exactly what I mean: some ass-kicking riffage with a really decent production that introduces the album with enough variety and balls to make you love it since the very first (mindblowing) tempo change. And even more when that first riff of "Manifest Destiny" kicks in, a sheer maelstrom of violence and adrenaline unleashed. Both "Gone Too Long" and "Do The Dream" have intros that somewhat slow down that relentless feeling of aggressiveness, but maybe I'm 'dealing with it' in a too much perfectionist way...
Lots of classic tracks: "Dead in a Ditch" reminds me of their previous shit and that's just excellent to me. "Think for Yourself" should be considered one of their finest moments, one of those hymns (along with Carnivore's "S.M.D" or Sepultura's "Inner Self") that change your whole damn life if you discover 'em during a troubled adolescence, not only for its perfect lyrics but for the top notch succession of riffs that it holds. Finally the album is closed with my DRI's personal favourite, "Man Unkind" (even able to match "I'd Rather be Sleeping" or "Couch Slouch" in my opinion!), a catchy song with a memorable chorus to sing along during "high times": "Man without an answer like a bird with broken wings, wrapped up in his misery, forgetting how to sing!".
Okay, they extended song lengths and therefore offered less songs. Some riffs were repeated until boredom (which I absolutely crave, those are songs that really ask for catchiness and the force they wisely applied). Some vocal lines may sound less raging than before. But still it is an incredible and really complete DRI album and, to me, the peak of their career.
Highlights: "Man Unkind", "Manifest Destiny", "Gone Too Long".
But of a weird comparisson? Let me elaborate. I really love And Justic For All. I never had any problems with it. Not even the production. For some reason what many called ‘flaws’ just worked for me.
However! "4 Of A Kind" has the exact same ‘flaws’ and on this album I would really call them flaws.
The major complaints are:
- Over all extremely dry sound. It’s mostly flat guitars. The drums are neatly played and clean sounding
- Average pace is often too slow
- Songs are overstretched.
There are a few songs here which are quality D.R.I. crossover, having reasonable length and are to the point. We’re talking ”Gone too Long”, “Slumlord” and “Dead In a Ditch” here. The band tries to write and play lengthier songs as well and turn out to be succesful on the very catchy “Suit And Tie Guy” with its thrash metal proof riffs.
Most other lengthier songs just drag. especially “Think For Yourself” and “Man Unkind” seem to go on forever and the riffs are really too simple and monotone to keep the songs alive. Also on these songs Brecht’s vocal performance sounds pretty uninspired. Is this the same guy who sang with such energy on "Dealing with It"?
Now Suicidal Tendencies were doing the same thing at the time, namely shifting the balance of crossover towards ‘metal’. Suicidal got it right when incorporating more of Rocky George’s melodies and giving the vocals something extra. D.R.I. unfortunately just made their songs longer yet forgot to put in more detail to keep them interesting.
I don’t want to spend more words on it anyway. As said there are 4 or 5 nice D.R.I. tunes to be found here but honestly, just get their 1987 “Crossover” album for some really good crossover.
D.R.I is a totally awesome band which combines in the best form ever Punk and Thrash Metal, and in their fourth album they only continue to kick some asses with fair amount of blazing Thrash monsters and flawless riffs which sounds perfect for moshing and headbanging till you break off.
This album has a lot catchy songs. Not catchy in a cheesy way, I'm talking about some serious memorable riffs, though simples and not much technical, they are fast as a Porsche and brutal as Thrash should be when it meets the roughness of Punk. The drumming is flawless, fast, sharp and insane. Just sounds perfect with the killer vocals and the dominant bass which increases a lot power within the riffs. The production is overwhelming, the guitar sounds heavy and raw and you can hear all the riffs clearly without missing any note. There isn't even one weak track here, all has catchy and intense riffs and lashing vocals. Highlights are probably "All for Nothing" which gets you into the mood of this album and has some of the catchiest riffs and vocals. "Manifest Destiny" is also awesome and has pretty good chorus, "Man Unkind" has also a great load of outstanding riffs, and "Gone Too Long" is my favorite one due to his silly intro which fits very well the title track and the blasting riffs.
All in all, it's a pretty good album, very enjoyable one and very catchy. After 3 listenings you can really enjoy the tracks, and when it clicks you won't leave this album for a long period. Get it!
This was my first D.R.I. album, but I still can't seem to get into it like I can every one of their other releases. There's something about it that seems a little off, a little bland, a little uninspired. After listening to the band's earlier releases, the reason became apparent.
After having successfully crossing over into thrash metal, things were looking up for the Infidels, but then for their first real thrash album we get this. It's almost as if they ran out of ideas for this one. Though there are a few exceptions, the lyrics come off as uninspired and repetitive. Same goes for the riffs, and a lot of the songs end up having the same feel. The only real standout song in either department is the killer "Suit and Tie Guy." Gone also is the intense speed of their earlier albums. No doubt 4 of a Kind is a fast thrash album, but it's not even close to matching the fury of any of their first three albums. It's also a bit too produced. The new guitar tone sounds a lot weaker than the tone on Crossover, and the generally chord based riffs don't help. The bass drum sound is weaker as well. When compared to any of the band's other albums, 4 of a Kind is the least heavy, the least speedy, and the least memorable.
But overall, it's actually a decent album, only paleing in comparison to the band's other releases. Had those albums not set the bar so high, this release would look a hell of a lot better. 4 of a Kind has its moments, but if you're new to D.R.I, this isn't the place to start your research.
I like this album. I really do. I'm able to enjoy hardcore/punk, and if it's mixed with some thrash, then the result is satisfactory to me. But this one ends up being more thrash than hardcore.
Now, don't get me wrong, there are still parts that are punky as all fuck, like the intro to "Think for Yourself", plus, most of the riffs have that "bouncy" rhythm that makes you want to shatter your bedroom doing that idiotic, but fun "pogo" dancing that punks do.
This is direct. This is non-pretentious. This works. Believe me, it does, get it if you're like me (a guy that doesn't mind a few influences outside of metal as long as the music pulverizes everything). Highlights: the aforementioned "Think for Yourself" (the punky part quickly evolve into some menacing thrash), "Do the Dream", the medley "All for Nothing/Manifest Destiny". But every song will satisfy you. Don't let the cover art fool you, this ain't for pussies.