You only have to look at the video and listen to the title track for proof that The Offspring are a band evolving from the punk pop jesters of old. Dexter Holland, whose blonde spikes made him a summery rocker in the ‘90s, now looks like Simon’s dad from The Inbetweeners, and you could play a dangerous drinking game in which you take a shot every time you hear a song the title track recycles (there’s at least four in there). Yep, they’ve officially hit middle age. The reflective title track aims for the open highways channelled by Foo Fighters, and does so successfully, as does the more introspective ‘All I Have Left is You’ and the ferocious ‘Dividing By Zero’. The downside is the tracks sit in a strange limbo of ballads, rockers and dance floor grooves, and none of them sound assured. ‘Cruising California’ provides a strange moment, with a tongue that was last seen that firmly in cheek in the ‘Pretty Fly (for a White Guy)’ days, it’s got a lovely lilt and a radio-friendly chorus, and is so polished ears will be tripping over whilst listening, not to mention the female backing and bathed synths. ‘OC Guns’ is another thought provoker, reaching for the reggae rock of Sublime, although that’s not an adjective to describe the finished result.
Days Go By is solid evidence that the group are embracing becoming the elder statesmen of punk, but where it’s big on maturity, it’s just short on tunes. Pretty fly, for old guys.