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She ain't the smartest, but dem titties doe... - 83%

TrooperEd, May 11th, 2016
Written based on this version: 2003, CD, Hip-O Records (Enhanced, Remastered, Crücial Crüe edition)

I always got the feeling that critics hated this band not because of their image or sleaze factor, but the fact that most of these people couldn’t think of anything to describe it other than “rock & roll.”

Even I’m having trouble coming up with things to say about Too Fast For Love, other than its a kick ass plain ol metal record. Never mind things people haven’t already said. I suppose most of this review could be spent explaining how those fuck heads Metallica spent decades slandering them only to end up becoming exactly like them in songwriting and integrity in their later years. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no glam apologist, and Motley Crue (or at least Vince, Nikki and Tommy) are just as much full of shit as any so called credible rock-star, but liking this album, let alone owning it, should never have been grounds for ex-communication from the true metal-crowd at any time in the 80s or now. And these shit-head Metallica fanboys who mindlessly slander them because Lars Ulrich told them too, those fools wish they could write something as good as Piece of Your Action.

That’s not to say this album is flawless. When I first got this album I remember thinking Starry Eyes was a little too pop and sissy for my tastes (and this is an album with two ballads). Listening to it now, yes the band is giving it all the attitude, but in some cases that attitude can be lost in translation, and here Vince loses it the most. You just can’t sound threatening or foreboding singing “those starry eyes….whoa oh.” Still, all these years later, it’s not THAT bad, and has quite a few great heavy riffs in the middle. Also, while will Tommy Lee will never get the respect he deserves as a drummer (despite being quite possibly the ugliest bastard to pork Pamela Anderson), I’ll admit he does this thing where he can’t lay off the bass drum where he’s supposed to be hitting the snare. You aren’t supposed to be doing that even with a double bass rhythm like on Live Wire (it should go kick, snare, kick, snare, not kick kicksnare kick kicksnare. Makes it a bit techno-ish/dance poppy. And say what you will about Motley’s pop tendencies, but I don’t think they wanted that either.

Strangely enough, this album has two ballad-esque songs but both of them are solid. Lyrically they're more dark and guttural than the saccharine nonsense Jon Bon Jovi would pen later in the decade; more Black Diamond than Every Rose Has It's Thorn, especially Merry-Go-Round. It might take a minute or two, but I can't picture your 80s soccer mom mistaking these two for even Home Sweet Home.

This album’s strongest weapon is the same it’s always been since day one: Mick Mars’ guitar tone. This guitar sound (along with Shout At The Devil) is essentially Morbid Tales 3 years before Morbid Tales. This is the most raw and distorted the band has ever sounded, and that includes on Dr. Feelgood. Wall of sound doesn't automatically equal heavier. Really the entire musical ensemble is (for the musically uneducated, a musical ensemble is every non-vocal aspect of the music). This makes Heaven & Hell tone sound even thinner.

Speaking of Heaven & Hell, if any of these songs had Ronnie James Dio’s vocals, NOBODY would be questioning their metalness. Which is more of an indictment of his occasional lyrical wussiness than Nikki Sixx’s. Walk Away anyone? Seriously who the fuck calls a woman handsome? Yet while nobody questions Ronnie’s cred singing “she’s looking to love you” Vince sings:

I'll either break her face, or take down her legs, Get my ways at will Go for the throatl..."

...and all these brainwashed Slayer fans won’t give him the time of day because he wore makeup, despite Slayer’s own temporary grand idea that make-up would make them look scarier (which it did).

As for Nikki, well Rule #2 of Spectre Sound Studios is "your bass player is a useless cunt" but there should also be a Rule 2b exception, "unless he's the main songwriter of the band." Nikki is NOT a great bass player, nor is he all that great a musician. But he is (or was, here anyway) a fine songwriter, and more importantly a damn fine riff-writer. That's right Mick Mars has no songwriter credit on this album whatsoever. Vince Neil has more credits than he does. But fuck does Mick execute those riffs and those songs with rock & roll precision (just the right amount of sloppiness). When it comes to traditional/classic metal territory, if you ain't serving the song you need to close your crappy restaurant. Even the Dave Lombardo's and the Kai Hansen's and Cliff Burton's play for the purpose at hand, not their egos.

Now you’re probably saying to yourself that I’ve spent more time attacking fans of other metal bands with bullet-proof credibility despite not only making the same mistakes as Crue, but TFFL not doing anything more fluffy than any other traditional metal bands did, than I did the actual music.

Well like I said at the beginning, there ain’t much else to say about it other than its kick ass heavy metal. Judas Priest wouldn’t play it that much differently between 1979 and 1990. I suppose there’s a note of depending on which track listing you have (vinyl or CD), the album may be a bit top heavy, but damn that's a sexy top. See what I did there?

Proceed with the rest of their catalogue at the risk of your own metal-street cred, but if you’re a fan of the British Steels, the Killers, the Fair Warnings, the Blizzard of Ozzs, the Thunder & Lightnings, etc. this is essential to your collection.

Highlights:
Piece of Your Action
Too Fast For Love
Take Me To The Top