F.O.D. (Fuck Off and Die) is a Belgian band that started out in 2008. They started as a one-time nostalgic project: the re-enactment of Green Day’s ‘Dookie’. Even their band name can be found on that album.
After seeing a few FOD shows where they played/covered ‘Dookie’. I wondered how their own songs would sound. Everybody knows them due to their Dookie-covering-stuff (except a few people who knows their 7-track album ‘Dance To This), but covering a song and making your own sound is just not the same. Their first full album ‘Ontario’ contains 16 songs in close collaboration with Thanks But No Thanks Records.
I laughed when I heard the intro of Racket Rating/this album. It’s a quote from a 1950’s educational video about what, in fact, makes a "good" party (Coronet Instructional Films). "The purpose of a party is to have fun together. And a successful party needs planning and skill. I’ll spare you the next part of this film. Words like “cock block” and “gay entertainment” pop up and we’re getting hints like: “Pimp out some proper whores for guests”. You just got to love the 50’s. A time where you just woke up at home and made some breakfast instead of the things going on right now after a night of heavy drinking.
I have some good news for the guys from F.O.D. I’m not going to rate them like they suggest in their first song, Racket Rating ‘Somewhere down below, probably less than zero’.
Let’s start from the beginning.
After hearing the first two, short, songs ‘Racket Rating’ and ‘20 second song’ (which in fact lasts for about 40 seconds), a spontaneous smile appeared on my face. The lyrics of those songs are hilarious and the messages very clear. All songs are written by Hans Roofthooft. During this entire album he’s telling his life story, about his kids, his wife, his private life, his dreams, his downfalls… When hearing these songs it’s not hard to notice that they’ve been inspired by bands like Descendents, Lagwagon and Bad Religion.
F.O.D. scored with their ‘Frenzal Record’ song. This song is about the entire ‘Smoko at the Pet Food Factory’ album from Frenzal Rhomb. Hans is telling them why he likes this album and what feelings he gets from listening to it. Frenzal Rhomb was very enthusiastic about this song. It’s always fun to see/hear/notice that other bands are someone’s inspiration.
For me, personally, ‘Like Them’ is the best song on this album. In this song we’re going back to the roots of the punk music. In the early days many bands used this sort of music to rebel against politics. This song does the same but in combination with a very strong bad religion sound. I did the ‘Bad Religion test’ with someone who never heard of F.O.D. I played 2 Bad Religion songs and ‘Like Them’ and asked which song was not a Bad Religion song. I had to play every song twice because she didn’t hear any difference. It’s a song which will gain many fans and will be appreciated by every Bad Religion fan.
Overall I can say that this is a very fun album to listen to. Every song has its own strong side. It’s very easy to make up your own second voice, which you can test on every F.O.D. show. Many reviewers will say that it’s a pity that Hans’s voice is very recognizable. For those who don’t know it yet, Hans is also the lead singer of The Rocket. He has a very special, unique voice which can be recognized when hearing his first note. In my opinion, the sound of F.O.D. and the rocket are quite different. It’s like seeing two different Johnny Depp movies. You know it’s Johnny but both movies aren’t the same. Well I have this feeling with F.O.D. It’s totally different from The Rocket. Another positive thing are the transitions between each song. It’s outstanding. Sometimes the transitions between different songs lasts forever. Thanks But No Thank Records did a very good job on this one!
One last hint: guys do not give up. Someday you will play in Ontario. You can trust me on that! Just buy this album, go and see some shows of these guys… And if you don’t like them… you can just ‘Fuck Off and Die’.