Darius Looks at Crue Fest 2
Motley Crue recently announced the sequel to last summerâ€™s successful concert tour, aptly titled Crue Fest. This yearâ€™s festival will feature all new supporting acts but much of the same hijinks that one would expect from a Motley Crue show. Motley Crue will again headline the festivities with direct support coming from platinum-selling Massachusetts metal band Godsmack. Theory of a Deadman, Drowning Pool and Charm City Devils round out the bill of what is sure to guarantee an eveningâ€™s worth of booze, naked flesh, and loud rock music for audiences nationwide.
The summer-long jaunt, which kicks off July 19th in Camden, NJ, traverses the entire country before concluding September 5th in Darien Lake, NY. Crue Fest 2 was announced in typical Motley Crue fashion; the band showed up to FUSE networks in New York City for a press conference in a large limousine made to look like a vintage ambulance accompanied with models in sexy nurse outfits. You gotta love the Crue.
Perhaps the single greatest feature of this summerâ€™s tour is that the band will play the seminal classic, Dr. Feelgood, in its entirety to celebrate its 20th anniversary. I canâ€™t decide which is more unbelievable: the fact that the Crue is alive and out on stage after all these years or that we lucky fans are going to get to hear some pretty classic songs that are rarely, if ever, performed live. Personally, I canâ€™t wait to hear â€œSticky Sweet.â€
So the press conference goes underway and the very first question asked was, â€œWhy did you choose these particular bands?â€ Nikki Sixx, the Crueâ€™s bass player and possibly the coolest person on the face of the earth, answered, â€œThe bands on last yearâ€™s tour and as well as this tour were chosen based on good songwriting, great live performances, history with large fan base or something that we believed in that was brand new or something exciting for rock fans to discover.â€
Save it Mr. Sixx. Youâ€™re the man, but youâ€™re not fooling anyone. Besides yourselves, four of the bands that you chose from last year (Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Trapt and your own Sixx:AM), and two more from this year (Drowning Pool and Charm City Devils), share the same management company, Allen Kovacâ€™s Tenth Street Entertainment. Itâ€™s fine that Crue Fest is being utilized as a vehicle to showcase the Tenth Street roster, but letâ€™s call a spade a spade. I doubt you were taking Trapt out last summer because Crue audiences go wild for â€œHead Strongâ€.
In any case, letâ€™s take a look at this yearâ€™s crop of bands:
These guys donâ€™t need an introduction. They donâ€™t need a bio. It is simply impossible to see these guys live and have a bad time. They are one of the greatest rock bands of our time, period.
Godsmack is also a great live band. Itâ€™s been awhile since I last saw them play back-to-back shows in Worcester, MA and Utica, NY in 2001, but I never forgot how good they were. The problem with Godsmack is that they got really repetitive with their records; many songs were derivative of their prior hits. I mean, â€œI Stand Aloneâ€ and â€œStraight Out of Lineâ€ are essentially the same song. How about â€œVooDooâ€ and â€œSerenityâ€? Not to mention lead singer Sully Erna, while a great frontman, borrowed heavily from Alice in Chains with his own band, from their very name (the song â€œGod Smackâ€ is off of the classic AIC album Dirt) from his vocal delivery, right down to the bandâ€™s sun logo.
But hey, Iâ€™m pumped to see them on this tour. They definitely will add a lot to the show and they should bring in some audience members that wouldnâ€™t necessarily be all about seeing the Crue. You can expect to see some more pure metal heads at the show and I think thatâ€™s a great thing.
Theory of a Deadman is enjoying increasing popularity but I donâ€™t get it. Too soft, very unoriginal, kind of annoying. Iâ€™ll admit that their single â€œSanta Monicaâ€ is a guilty pleasure but it ends right there.
I honestly canâ€™t believe Drowning Pool is still around. I mean, theyâ€™re on their third singer! Original frontman Dave Williams tragically died of a rare heart condition on their tour bus. The bandâ€™s second choice, Jason â€œGongâ€ Jones, provided vocals to a lackluster record titled Desensitized (although â€œStep Upâ€ is a great song), proved to be a much too explosive personality, and was unceremoniously kicked out of the band during the middle of a tour.
Enter former SOiL singer Ryan McCombs. Admittedly, McCombs has the best pure metal voice of the three. But that doesnâ€™t necessarily translate into a cohesive unit that can write and record a good album as well as put on a dynamic performance. I just did not think Drowning Pool would be able to connect with fans anymore with the constant drama and revolving cast of singers. Not to mention, the first single released to the public as the McCombs-led Drowning Pool was â€œSoldiersâ€, which was written for our men and women in the armed forces. I admired the guys for trying, but the song is horrendous. After I heard that song, I thought these guys were done.
I was wrong. Little did I know, but they had much more up their sleeve with this album, titled Full Circle. The second single, â€œEnemyâ€, kills and would have been a more appropriate choice to re-introduce the band to the world. â€œRebornâ€ is a good song. But the albumâ€™s secret weapon is â€œ37 Stitchesâ€, a haunting ballad that is a swift departure from the usual hard rockers that weâ€™ve come to expect from these guys. â€œ37 Stitchesâ€ was actually the last song recorded for the record and was released due to popular demand. I have heard the song on Sirius satellite radio for months on end and I never get tired of it; itâ€™s as good as any rock song released in the last year.
Iâ€™m glad Drowning Pool is on the tour. Iâ€™ve never seen them live and I like Full Circle. Some of the Dave Williams era stuff is good too so itâ€™ll be good to hear the old songs.
I donâ€™t have much to say about this band. Their debut album hasnâ€™t dropped yet and I havenâ€™t heard any of their stuff. My guess is that if any band is going to enjoy the mass exposure and excess that comes with a Motley Crue tour, itâ€™s going to be these guys. The band was signed to Eleven Seven Music by Nikki Sixx, himself, so he obviously sees something in them. Thatâ€™s enough for me to be excited to see Charm City Devils. That and the lead singer has cool rock guy hair.