Vince Neil: Vocals
Mick Mars: Guitar
Nikki Sixx: bass
Tommy Lee: Drums Be warned! Just when you thought it was safe to come out of the house, the world’s most notorious hard rock band is back, and the story isn’t a pretty one, but this time it has a happy ending. No band has consumed as many drugs and downed as much booze without dying as L.A.’s Mötley Crüe. The Crüe return with Saints of Los Angeles, their first CD with the original line-up -- Nikki Sixx, Mick Mars, Tommy Lee and Vince Neil -- in over a decade and the ninth studio album in their career. Based on the autobiographical events with very personal lyrics, the revealing CD offers tremendous insight into the lives of the rebellious leaders of the “L.A. sleaze rock” movement. The band that defines the L.A. rock scene delivers the soundtrack to that experience inspired by their New York Times best-seller, the must-read book The Dirt. The new Mötley Records/Eleven Seven Music album is described by chief songwriter Sixx as, “A tale of dirty needles, damaged minds, music industry battles and a whole lotta sex based on our stories from The Dirt.” The band’s 2001 autobiography is currently being developed as a major motion picture. Saints of Los Angeles is a major event for the band that has sold more than 80 million albums, 25 million in the U.S.A., to date including 1983’s four-million-selling Shout at the Devil, followed by five consecutive Top 10 singles in 1985’s Theatre of Pain (#6), 1987’s platinum-selling Girls, Girls, Girls (#2), 1989’s six-million-selling and chart-topper Dr. Feelgood, 1994’s Mötley Crüe (#7) and 1997’s Gold selling Generation Swine (#4). “The Crüe is back…and they’re grimier than ever.” (Rolling Stone, May ‘08) Having survived three decades of decadence and nearly every possible obstacle, including several brought on by themselves, Mötley Crüe now find themselves in a once inconceivable position—that of rock royalty. After regrouping and headlining their 2005 Carnival of Sins world tour, named by Pollstar as the number seven grossing tour of the year, the platinum two-CD greatest hits package Red, White & Crüe and 2006’s Route of All Evil Tour with Aerosmith, “We needed to make new music,” says Sixx of Saints of Los Angeles. “We’re not a nostalgia act. It seemed to make sense to me to get the bullshit out of the way and just make music. We’ve created our own sound and it was time to do it again.”
Inspired by his experiences writing his own current N.Y. Times best-seller, the critically-acclaimed The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star, and recording the accompanying soundtrack with his band SIXX:A.M. Nikki turned to his collaborators on that project, James Michael and DJ Ashba, work with, Mick, Tommy and Vince on the new album. The trio co-wrote and co-produced the title track and first single, “Saints of Los Angeles,” inspired, according to Sixx, by the 103 streets named after saints in Los Angeles. The single debuted on AOL Music’s Spinner.com and was the first song ever released simultaneously as a downloadable track for the revolutionary music video game Rock Band and on iTunes on April 15th.
Coinciding with the release of Saints of Los Angeles, Mötley Crüe announced their first-annual Crüe Fest, headlining their own version of the Next Great American Rock Festival. Dubbed “The Loudest Show on Earth” the inaugural tour features several acts poised to ascend to rock’s royal throne: Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Trapt and Nikki’s SIXX:A.M.. The 40-city tour kicks off July 1st in Florida.
The Crüe invited of all the participating Crüe Fest bands to join them on background vocals in the “Saints of Los Angeles” video and on the single.
“Josh Todd from Buckcherry came up to me in the middle of shooting the video, with all these half-naked women and crazy-looking extras running around and said, ‘This is going to be the summer of excess’,” says Tommy Lee. “It’s like we’ll be leaving a trail of panties from coast to coast.”
Regarding the new album’s title, Nikki laughs, “It’s supposed to be sarcastic, because obviously we’re not saints, but we are from the streets of Los Angeles. As a lyricist, I’ve become a story-teller of reality.” Adds Vince Neil, “Much of life is looking back and remembering what happened to you. Let’s share those memories, re-enact them, turn them into songs, plays, movies, books and a soundtrack to life.”
That is just what Saints of Los Angeles does on songs like “Down at the Whisky.”
“When you hear that song, you’re standing on the Sunset Strip somewhere between 1979 and 1981,” says Mick Mars. “You can see it going down. You can smell it. We were there, so it’s nice to be able to share that with people who weren’t. What is was like back then.”
Other new songs include “White Trash Circus,” according to Nikki, “a Mick Mars-inspired sleazy strip club anthem that just drips with grime… I’m excited about that one.”
Sixx describes “Face Down in the Dirt” as “straight-up sarcasm, mixed with anger… there’s a lot of humor on the album because, let’s face it, we’re ridiculously funny.”
That comes through loud and clear on “Chicks = Trouble.” “That’s like Groundhog’s Day in Mötley Crüe land, where we just keep stepping in the same fucking piles of shit. There are piles and we pick ‘em.”
That goes double for “This Ain’t a Love Song (This is a Fuck Song),” which Mick classifies as “a glorious return to the heyday of Shout at the Devil, Girls, Girls, Girls and Dr. Feelgood.“
“It’s snotty and we’re not going to apologize for it,” insists Nikki about the new album. “So let the critics line up with their poison pens and say what they will say, but in the end, they’ll be backstage just like everybody else, wishing to get a glimpse of the decadence.”
Recently named President of Eleven Seven Music, Sixx is raring to go with his new job, sharing his own experiences by guiding other musicians to achieve their goals, creatively and commercially.
Of course, the Crüe have been doing that for 27 years now, and the amazing thing is not that they lived to tell the tale (although that is, in a way, a kind of unholy miracle), it’s that all of their wildly uncontrollable habits are clearly audible in their music, then and now. Just listen to these albums and, if you concentrate hard enough, you can hear the sound of the coke coming off the tables, the squeak of the bed springs, and the sheer sleazy grind of California heavy metal over the last two decades.
Mötley Crüe is also one of the only bands in history to successfully acquire ownership of all their master recordings. In 2003, their wholly owned label, Mötley Records, licensed their catalog to Universal Music and saw reissues of all of their albums as well as the first installment in their box set, Music To Crash Your Car To – Vol. 1, a four-CD set that is the first of three volumes chronicling the band’s storied career, with Volume 2 released 2004. The first-ever greatest hits DVD on the band was also released in 2003, entitled Mötley Crüe: Greatest Video Hits.
In conjunction with the band’s 2005 reunion, their first concerts in six years, VH1 produced a “behind the scenes” documentary showing how the band’s management company, Tenth Street Entertainment, managed to put the feuding group back together. The four original members recorded three new songs for the two-CD anthology album, Red White & Crüe, a platinum record. One of the three songs, “Home Sweet Home,” was accompanied by a video culled from footage of the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans, helping raise funds for recovery, and became an internet hit. A first-ever Mötley Crüe concert DVD with all four original members documenting the tour, Carnival of Sins, was also released, featuring Tommy Lee’s notorious “tittycam” and the claymation footage from the animated film Disaster which opened the show. In 2006, they were honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and co-headlined with Aerosmith on the Route of All Evil tour.
Mötley Crüe made rock and roll what it is today. Without the Crüe, stadium rock in the 1990s might have been all about Journey, Foreigner, Kansas and REO Speedwagon. And they’re not about to let it happen in 2008, either.
“This is what we need,” says guitarist Mick Mars about the band’s new album Saints of Los Angeles and upcoming Crüe Fest. “Artists dictating what will happen musically. This is not a safe bet, a show for the weak of heart. This is fuckin’ rock and roll. This is what we need.”
And Mötley Crüe is just the band to give it to us.