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Just Push Play

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★★★★☆
(277 Reviews)

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  • Since the band’s reincarnation in 1985 (with the rejoining of Joe Perry after an extended hiatus), we were able to forgive them for the fact that they began their songs with professionals outside the band because, quite simply, ‘Permanent Vacation’ (1987) and ‘Pump’ (1989) ranked among Aerosmith’s very best records. But the band’s slip began with a penchant for power ballads, some that worked (“Cryin” and “What It Takes”) and some that did not (“Crazy” and “Angel”) and became more pronounced on ‘Get a Grip’ (1993) and ‘Nine Lives’ (1997). (Coincidentally, this is also the time when band members other than Steven Tyler and Joe Perry stopped participating in the songwriting.)On their first self-produced record, ‘Just Push Play’ (2001), the trend continues. If you can get past the image of Aerosmith performing live at the superbowl with Britney Spears, then I suppose the record’s first single, “Jaded”, is not so bad. However, the record’s second single, “Fly Away from Here” is the culmination of all that has precipitated the band’s demise – a god-awfully predictable ballad written entirely by non-band members.To be sure, the band adds a few touches of electronica in an attempt to update their sound (“Outta Your Head”). But even the record’s strongest cut, “Just Push Play”, a return to Aerosmith’s riff-rockers, lacks the lyrical play that Steven Tyler characteristically brought to such classics as “Walk This Way” and “Rag Doll”.In summary, while ‘Just Push Play’ is a bit of a disappointment, there is still hope that the band could still produce another classic record someday. (…)

    Posted on March 9, 2010