Mötley Crüe - New Tattoo review


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Band: Mötley Crüe
Album: New Tattoo
Release date: 2000

01. Hell On High Heels
02. Treat Me Like The Dog I Am
03. New Tattoo
04. Dragstrip Superstar
05. 1st Band On The Moon
06. She Needs Rock N' Roll
07. Punched In The Teeth By Love
08. Hollywood Ending
09. Fake
10. Porno Star
11. White Punks On Dope
12. Timebomb [Track bonus]

The real comeback album?

Never a bunch to do things by convention, Mötley Crüe flip expectation on its head by attempting to bring back the sound of old here rather than on their comeback album that featured the classic line-up. New Tattoo is the album I would have expected Generation Swine to be, a good though not great album that can be shown as proof that there is life in the band yet, but although hardcore fans may be excited, there is little here for more casual fans of the band.

The key word in the previous paragraph was 'attempting'; while they certainly aim in the direction of their classic sound, either their gunpowder is dry or they forgot to load their weapons before bringing them to the battlefield, as the band mostly fire blanks. The band sound like they are ready to get back to the down and dirty blues glam they had made their forte in the '80's, but now they've brought disinfectant and alcohol-free beer.

The members seem to recognise what fans want them to do by trying to emulate their style in the '80's and produce material in the vein of their glory days a la Girls, Girls, Girls et al, but at the same time they had to put a modern twist on it lest they open themselves open to direct comparisons, tweaking the classic formula with greater use of effects and modern production (but not to the levels of Generation Swine, thankfully).

There are moments when the sun rises again on the Sunset Strip, with tracks like "Drag Strip Superstar", "1st Band On The Moon" and "White Punks On Dope" being the best of the bunch. While they won't be considered Mötley Crüe classics anytime soon, they're solid additions to the second tier/deeper cuts collection. Casual fans will be better suited elsewhere but hardcore fans will have a few more additions to their collection.

Castillo does admirably enough on the drum kit, emulating enough of Lee's sound as to keep a trademark piece of Crüe's trademark sound intact while ensuring he is able to give the tracks his stamp and style so as follow not walk in Lee's shoes. Neil seems content to phone it in and half ass it; while not putting a bad performance as such, he lacks conviction in his delivery and seems to be going through the motions. Mars and Sixx seem to be the ones carrying the weight of the band on their shoulders, while bruised and (in Mars' case, the unfortunate victim of medical degeneration) weary from Generation Swine, they at least carry their weight and then some; it's just a shame Sixx couldn't recreate the magic he once had as a songwriter.

The biggest problem with this album is that it does little to really move the needle in either direction. Tracks like "New Tattoo", "Punched In The Teeth By Love" and "Porno Star" aren't good or bad enough to evoke a strong reaction; it's something to listen to and wait for it to finish rather than relish or rage over. It is rarer to find a track that actually inspires feelings either way; songs like "Treat Me Like The Dog I Am", "Fake" and "Hollywood Ending" end up being more memorable than they deserve to be, owing to their awful quality punctuating the bland album with some kind of reaction.

An improvement and a stride in the right direction after the mistake Generation Swine was, New Tattoo is a slow crawl down the Sunset Strip pointing out the hallmarks of the glory days gone by; the engine has lost much of its horsepower and the car is running on fumes, but it's running… or sputtering to life occasionally at the very least.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 6
Songwriting: 5
Originality: 5
Production: 7


Written on 07.12.2020 by Just because I don't care doesn't mean I'm not listening.

Staff review by
The 80s were glorious for Motley Crue, well, i cannot say the same thing for the 90s since the band had to overcome many problems in various factors. Line-up changes, something not good for the coherence of the band since the Motley Crue line-up to offer masterpieces was and will always be the Vince Neil/Nikki Sixx/Tommy Lee/Mick Mars one and since someone was missing the outcome was not so good. And the history proved that this really happened judging from albums like "Motley Crue" and "Generation Swine" which were decadent albums, but literally and not with the decadence of being bad-ass and dirty that added to the aesthetic of their music.

published 28.12.2005 | Comments (2)

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