So what gives you rock and roll credibility? A hit? Playing the MTV awards? How about a supporting roll in a “classic” video? That’s what happened to the guy — he was the put upon teen in the Twisted Sister video for “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” Now he’s all grown up, with a Ronnie James Dio hair cut and a fancy stage name (ALL CAPS, PLEASE. I’M AN ARTIST). I guess this publicity ploy worked, as his record found its way into my hands; but in the long run, he might find himself trapped. “Oh, DAX? Isn’t he that Twisted Sister Guy?”
Musically, he’s not bad, but not great. With a competent backing from producer Steve Ferlazzo, DAX makes some nice music in the vein of post-20th Century art rock. Whispers of hip-hop and electronica pop in and out, making a lush and listenable backing for his clearly enunciated lyrics. Bracketing the songs are two very spacey pieces that sound like they came from an animation festival. They provide a nice counterpoint to the main works on this EP, like the breathy yet intense “Submission,” a love song to his Dominatrix.
I like this guy, but he’s bit hard to pigeon hole, and that might hurt him as much as the TS business. His arrangements are clever, but they span multiple styles in single songs; chances are good that if you like the intro, something later on might be a bit off-putting. Maybe he can create some new fusion of styles, but he needs to let go of his youthful fame.