The third single from Home is “5-1-5-0,” a doozy of a title if ever there were one. When I first saw that, I thought, “what the heck is a 5-1-5-0?” Turns out it’s a slang for acting crazy, derived from the “involuntary psychiatric hold” section of the California Welfare and Institutions Code — someone who is a “danger to property, danger to others, and danger to themselves” per Urban Dictionary. (Yeah, who would’ve thought I’d have to consult Urban Dictionary on a review?)
With that out of the way, the song is something so few of Dierks’ songs have been lately: it’s fun to listen to. The production rocks out hard enough, keeping the prominent banjo line that’s a trademark of his. “5-1-5-0, somebody call the po-po” is far stronger of a lyric than it looks on paper, as it sticks in the head after only one listen. Admittedly, Dierks sounds a little stilted when he sings “po-po,” but otherwise, he sounds fully committed to the song, giving it the playful energy it needs.
Dierks launched his career with a fun up-tempo (the excellent “What Was I Thinkin’”), so it was a bit disappointing when I heard him misfire on more recent up-tempo fare — stumbling through the utter lack of melody in “Sideways,” then as I said before, sleepwalking through “Am I the Only One.” “5-1-5-0″ is not a lyrical masterpiece, but not all up-tempos have to be. It’s just a silly little piece of ear candy. And I’m sure it’s the kind of ear candy I won’t get sick of after a few listens.