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Shout at the Devil

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★★★★½
(68 Reviews)

Mötley Crüe Biography - Mötley Crüe Discography - All Heavy Metal Bands

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Axe were a metal rock band led by vocalist Edgar Riley and guitarist Bobby Barth. They released numerous albums in the 80’s and have had a cult following ever since. Their two biggest albums were Nemesis (1983) & Offering (1982), their only Billboard charting albums. Features the track ’Midnight’, which appeared on the cassette only release of the album. First time on CD. Wounded Bird. 2003.

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  • Originally released in 1983, Shout at the Devil is the seminal Rock album of the 1980s. With their sophomore effort, Motley Crue continued to define both their musical and stage styles. As they honed their skills in the recording booth, countless other bands found ways to copy bassist Nikki Sixx, guitarist Mick Mars, drummer Tommy Lee and vocalist Vince Neil.

    The narration “In the Beginning” sets the tone for the entire album. Immediately, listeners realize they are about to embark on a sonic experience of Metal proportions. With the album’s title track, Motley Crue created a stadium anthem, guaranteed to get fans on their feet, fists in the air. “Shout at the Devil” as a track is simple enough: it relies on heavy guitar riffs, steady bass and chanting. The opening arrangement is both pleasing and painful to the ears. The chord changes and clashing notes transport the listener to an underworld where good and evil collide, where fantasy and reality are one in the same.

    With “Looks that Kill,” Motley Crue helped make Metal commercial. Through the new invention of MTV, the band used the strength of the track to produce a major budget music video. That video helped Motley Crue create a synergy of music, mayhem and moxie. The heavy intro to “Looks that Kill” keeps the Metal train rolling, and the hook keeps the track running through your head all day long. It’s also through “Looks that Kill” that lyrical master Nikki Sixx really lets his talents shine. A true testament of any good songwriter is the ability to transport a listener to another place and time, and Sixx accomplishes this goal with “Looks that Kill.”

    The heaviest song on the record is “Bastard,” a non-single but concert staple. The pace of the track is frenetic and the lyrics alarming. As with all things Motley, shock value is of the utmost importance and the boys achieve their goal with this head-banging classic.

    The Beatles cover “Helter Skelter” seems somewhat misplaced among the Metal majesty that is Motley, but somehow, the quartet makes it work. Perhaps it’s the enterprising guitar solos by Mick Mars or the thunderous rhythm of Tommy Lee. Whatever the reason, Motley tackles the British invasion track, transforming it into a Sunset Strip sleaze staple for cover bands in bars all across the world.

    Even though “Too Young to Fall in Love” peaked at number 90 on the Billboard chart; today the track is synonymous with all things Crue. Always the wordsmith, Nikki Sixx is able to sum up every bad relationship with two simple sentences:

    You say our love/
    Is like dynamite.
    Open your eyes/
    `Cause it’s like fire and ice.

    With blazing guitars, screeching vocals and lyrics that succinct, it’s hard to argue the importance of “Too Young to Fall in Love” in Metal history.

    The tracks “Red Hot,” “Knock `Em Dead Kid,” “Ten Seconds to Love” and “Danger” all play their role in rounding out the classic Metal masterpiece. Always eager to spawn controversy in favor of gaining street credibility, the boys in Motley Crue dedicated “Knock `Em Dead Kid” to the LAPD. Ready for a “star spangled fight and back in black,” the Crue threatens other bands that come too close to their Metal empire, built and glorified on the strength of Shout at the Devil.

    The special 2003 re-master of Shout at the Devil contains extra goodies like demo versions of the title track, “Looks that Kill,” “Hotter than Hell” and “Too Young to Fall in Love.” The 2003 release also includes the previously unreleased track “I Will Survive.” The enhanced CD also includes the video of “Looks that Kill.” Original artwork, complete liner notes and updated band interviews are also included in the re-mastered package.

    Posted on November 16, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Motley was one of the first metal acts I really got seriously into as a teenager, after Iron Maiden and Ozzy Osbourne. I first heard them on a radio broadcast of the ‘83 US Festival, and while that performance, long thought of as one of their worst, didn’t knock me out, I heard enough in their songs to get my attention. Much to the horror of my mom, I went out and bought the original vinyl record, complete with its pentagram cover, and began absorbing the violent, misogynistic and always rude music that was Motley Crue. After one listen, I was hooked.

    Though it is nearly as politically incorrect as the early Guns N’Roses records, this album still holds up remarkably well today, mainly for its crisp, flawless production set to some of the rawest music ever made. The subject matter will still make mothers across America cringe, from the anarchistic title track to “Ten Seconds To Love” (a reference to quickie sex in an elevator) to the violence and vengeance of “Bastard.” The album’s sole ballad, “Danger,” is also a dark and violent piece, bringing to life the dark side of life in Hollywood. “Looks That Kill,” “Too Young To Fall In Love,” and “Red Hot” are also classics to all true Motley fans.

    This is an album that is strong from beginning to end, and has been criminally overlooked by the mainstream media as one of the most influential albums of all time, mostly because of the hair-metal movement that it influenced. But while many bands attempted to copy the Crue, nobody even came close, and that is whey they are one of the only bands from that time whose music has survived and is still a staple of Classic Rock radio today. This is still the Crue at the absolute top of their game, and if you only own one of their records, this should be the one.

    Posted on November 16, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • THE BAND: Vince Neil (vocals), Mick Mars (guitar), Nikki Sixx (bass), Tommy Lee (drums). Home town: Los Angeles, CA.

    THE DISC: 17 total tracks (16 music tracks, 1 bonus video “Looks That Kill”). The original 11 songs, plus 5 unreleased demos (3 songs from the album, and two new songs). All together, clocks in at approximately 60 minutes. Originally released on Elecktra Records label; digitally remastered and re-released on Hip-O Records.

    COMMENTS: “Shout At The Devil” (1983) was my first real introduction to Motley Crue. When their debut (“Too Fast For Love”) hit the street 2 years earlier, I thought it was good in a very raw sense… but it didn’t hit me like “Shout” did. Where “Too Fast” was all over the place (coarse, unrefined, perhaps even immature), “Shout” was the slick polar opposite… cultivated, well written, professional, polished; a full-blown ripe and ready rock band ready to take on the world. As good as the hits were (“Looks That Kill”, “Too Young To Fall In Love” and even briefly the remake of the Beatles’ “Helter Skelter” hitting the FM airwaves), the deeper album cuts totally rocked… “Red Hot”, Ten Seconds To Love”, “Bastard”, “Knock ‘Em Dead Kid” and the title track were all classics in my book. The bonus cuts here are very worthy. It’s great hearing alternate takes on such classic material. The two new songs are equally good – especially since I had never heard them before (I must admit, when I first picked up the new CD, I was hoping “Hotter Than Hell” was a remake of the old Kiss tune… but it’s not). The Crue has numerous compilations (“Red, White & Crue” easily being the best) and “Shout At The Devil” is well represented on each. Some fans will say 1989’s “Dr. Feelgood” is the Crue’s best album. I agree that “Dr. Feelgood” was their most commercially successful release (4 major hits), but not the band’s most rock solid collective effort. If you want one studio album from the Crue, it has to be this one. Great disc.

    Posted on November 16, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Although Motley Crue’s debut album “Too Fast for Love” is a fine album that is held in high esteem today, upon its release in 1982, it failed to gain attention. Not detoured by their debut’s lack of success, the Crue hit the studio once again with producer Tom Weirman to record their sophomore classic “Shout at the Devil” (1983).

    “Shout at the Devil” is the album that put Motley Crue on the map and thrust them into superstardom. While “Dr. Feelgood” (1989) remains the Crue’s best selling album, many fans regard “Shout at the Devil” as the band’s magnum opus.

    Eschewing the punk styling of their debut, the Crue opted for a heavier, fiercer look and sound for their second album. If “Too Fast for Love” paid tribute to the Clash and Generation X, “Shout at the Devil” barrowed a little from KISS and Aerosmith; but made the sound heavier. Song after song, “Shout” takes no prisoners. Indeed, “Shout at the Devil” is the bands heaviest, most intense release.

    While “Shout” isn’t exactly a concept record, defiance against corrupt authority seems to be the album’s central theme. “Shout at the Devil” depicts a world without morality, a hopeless, empty, sorrowful place. Evil abounds, but you must fight it, be strong, and fight back.

    One reason “Shout” is such a great album is the band really gives 100 percent effort. The Crue had not yet slipped into complacency and went into the studio full force. It’s as though with “Shout,” they wanted to make a statement. They wanted to tell the world that they were the meanest, baddest, loudest, fiercest band on the planet. With “Shout,” Nikki Sixx (bass), Tommy Lee (drums), Mick Mars (guitar), and Vince Neil (vocals), give the performance of their career.

    Not only did the Crue have the image and the attitude, they also had great songs to back it up. Simply put, Nikki Sixx’s best songwriting is from this period. The songs are heavy, but also highly melodic. The whole album has great hooks and grooves, but is never overly commercial or contrived. While the Crue’s later work was excellent if uneven, “Shout” is virtually flawless.

    The album starts out with an introduction titled “In the Beginning,” which describes a world gone to hell. The narrator tells the listener to fight back, “be strong and Shout at the Devil!” This introduction is essential to setting the atmosphere for the rest of the album and is a great lead-in the album’s title track. The mid-tempo “Shout at the Devil” has a magnificent pounding beat with a sinister riff and groove. The rapid-fire “Looks that Kill” is probably the album’s catchiest song, which may be why it was chosen as a single. The hard-hitting “Bastard” is good, if not excellent, and keeps up the momentum.

    The album slows down a bit for the haunting instrumental “God Bless the Children of the Beast,” which is a nice change of pace. This leads perfectly into a cover of the Beatles “Helter Skelter.” “Helter Skelter” is considered by some to be one of the first metal songs ever written, so its inclusion is not entirely out-of-place. The Crue more-or-less stick to the original sound of the track, but give it a little more of a metal trimming. Although not quite up-to-par with the original (it is The Beatles after all), it’s definitely a worthy cover and a great addition to “Shout.” “Red Hot,” while not the album’s most well-known song, is quite strong and infectious. “Too Young to fall in Love,” another Motley staple, is the closest the album comes to an actual balled. The intensity of the album only increases as it winds down with the no-holds-bar “Knock `em Dead Kid,” and “Ten Seconds to Love.” The intensity levels off with “Danger,” which makes for a good closing number.

    The remastered edition has plenty of bonus material that should be of interest to fans. Demo versions of “Shout at the Devil,” “Looks that Kill,” and “Too Young to fall in Love” show the songs as works-in-progress and are of important historical value. The demo “Hotter than Hell” was re-worked, and re-titled “Louder than Hell” for the Crue’s follow-up album “Theatre of Pain” (1985). It’s cool to hear a “Theatre of Pain” era song as it might have been used for “Shout.” The unreleased “I Will Survive” is good, but not great.

    Released in 1983, “Shout at the Devil” has held up fairly well. It may seem a little dated and tame when compared to something like Marilyn Manson’s “Antichrist Superstar” (1996) or other more recent metal bands, but “Shout” was one of the first of its type. It should be noted that Manson himself is a big fan of this album. So without “Shout,” there would be no “Antichrist Superstar.”

    Along with “Too Fast for Love,” and the highly underrated self-titled “Motley Crue” (1994), “Shout at the Devil” remains the Crue’s best work. Although there were many imitators, some good, some bad, “Shout at the Devil” remains a quintessential 80s heavy metal album.

    Posted on November 16, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I was in college in the fall of 1983 when I bought this originally on vinyl. I was huge (and still am) into KISS and thought these guys were trying a bit too hard to look like KISS. However, the graphics and look intrigued me and I bought this after seeing the “Looks That Kill” video and finding out Motley Crue wasn’t a second-rate KISS after all. Maybe the attraction was due (in part) to the fact that KISS was dropping the make-up and I didn’t want them to lose the look that made them, well, KISS!

    I found that the Crue had their own style and sound that was a breath of fresh air in the mainly synth-pop early 80’s. Rock n’ roll was still ALIVE after all!

    This CD is, from start to finish, THE best rocking Motley Crue ever gave us. “Too Fast For Love” was a primer and they hit their stride on “Shout At The Devil.” EVERY song is excellent and it’s non-stop nail biting rock all the way. They do mix it up a biy though. “God Bless The Children Of The Beast” is a suprisingly piece that (like KISS’ “Beth”) shows a dimension to the band that, on the surface, you would never guess was there.

    “Too Young To Fall In Love” was perfect for the MTV crowd, and “Red Hot” and “Knock ‘Em Dead Kid” was there for the true headbangers. The Crue even took a crack at The Beatles ‘White Album’ classic, “Helter Skelter,” put their own mark on it and came up with a gem. Vince Neil is no Paul McCartney in the vocal department, but his voice works for the band regardless.

    After seeing Motley Crue live in Pittsburgh in 1984 I was primed to have a new album. They came back in ‘85 with “Theatre Of Pain,” but I found that one a bit “too MTV” – with the edge of “Shout” clearly tamed down. “Dr. Feelgood” may be their biggest seller, but they never sounded more like Motley Crue to me than on this TIMELESS CLASSIC – “Shout At The Devil!”

    I don’t think any Crue fan was disappointed when they heard this for the first time. I BECAME a fan thanks to this one.

    Thanks Nikki, Vince, Tommy & Mick…for a true masterpiece of rock n’ roll – and good luck on the road in 2005! SEE YOU THEN!

    Posted on November 16, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now