So the question on all your tongues is, is the new Motley compilation any good?
Let’s talk about the album step by step, starting with the three new songs. If I Die Tomorrow was written with the pop-punk upstarts Simple Plan, but it’s still Motley. Mick’s guitar makes it Motley. It’s good to hear Tommy back on drums, but they sound a little too processed. Up next is the controversial Sick Love Song. Is it Tommy playing drums at all? Tracii Guns of Brides Of Destruction said that Tommy hates the song and it’s actually Josh Freese on drums here. As for the song, it’s a little pedestrian, with the verses almost rapped out. I don’t like this one. Last up, we have Street Fighting Man, a Stones cover. Vince’s voice is pretty shot here. It’s pretty hard to listen to. I’d say of the new songs, If I Die Tomorrow is the only one worthy of the name Motley Crue. (A fourth new song, I’m A Liar (That’s The Truth), is on the Japanese issue of this album, and also the UK 7″ single)
The packaging is excellent, a mirror of the recent Van Halen best of in the deluxe digipack. Cover is striking. Artwork is all in black, white and red…perfect for the title. You also get two CDs for the price of one. That’s pure marketing genius. You could either go out and buy the old Greatest Hits, or buy this for the same value, and get twice as much music.
And the music? Well, you get the three new songs as mentioned.
But what do you get as far as the rest of the album?
1. Toast Of The Town, their first indi single. It was recently restored to its proper place on the Too Fast For Love album, but as their first single it definitely has a place on this anthology.
2. A generous slice of music from every album. EVERY album. Including Decade (Primal Scream, Home Sweet Home ‘91, which was the superior mix). You get the two “new” tracks from the old greatest hits. You get tracks from Generation Swine, and New Tattoo. Heck, even the self-titled release and Quaternary, both with Corabi on vocals, are represented.
3. A rare track. Black Widow was never released on a Motley CD, until now.
4. New pics (cool ones, too) and good liner notes. The liner notes don’t cover anything up like the VH ones did. Tommy leaving the band, and Vince getting fired are documented. The only thing that saddened me was not seeing Randy Castillo’s name in the booklet. It’s hard being the guy who replaced Tommy Lee, but it’s even harder being dead, so they should have given the guy some respect.
What didn’t I like? One qualm:
Use It Or Lose It? Why? One of the weakest songs in Motley history must have had a soft spot in someone’s black black heart, for it to be included here.
It’s best to think of this album as an anthology. There are some rare single edits and mixes, the afformentioned unreleased track, three new ones, and everything arranged sequencially. It’s well done, much more so than Van Halen’s in every way, shape and form.
And as for the single CD prince for almost 2.5 hours of music? Make mine Motley.