Album Reviews: December 2005


Tommy Lee - Tommyland: The Ride (Steamhammer/SPV) 21/11/2005

Well here in the UK, we've been spoon fed, of a sort, this artist for what must surely be a month as I write this review, albeit somewhat later than we would've hoped. Tommy Lee, drummer with rock band Motley Crue (as if you needed to be told!) and self styled Mr Charisma or should that be 'Mr Rich and Famous' has not just released this solo affair, but is also fronting his own TV show for Channel 4 - 'Tommy Lee Goes To College', a program I'll be honest and confess I've not caught, although surely anyone couldn't have failed to catch the trailers if you stray upon the station during evening hours.

Television aside, we're here to take a listen to Lee's latest audio efforts and having been a fan of David Lee Roth and Steve Vai's releases in the past, I have to say this holds up. Albeit stereo typical good time rock'n'roll, this entertains as does its maker. I can quite see myself waiting for that clear summers day, with this album banging out the melodies in the car - oh well that's sometime off so for now I'll just make of it as I will.

As might be expected some of the tunes here are more immeadiate that others, whilst there are those that might take a little more getting used to. The first track of the album "Good Times" introduces proceedings well, with good use of accoustic guitars and a hip-hop infuenced beat. "Trying Again" is another highlight and this time spits in your face, with lyrics that are perhaps a tad autobiographical. Track five "The Butler" which introduces the song "Tired", is one you won't be expecting, but all I have to say for both of these is why not slap a 'Parental Advisory' sticker on the front and give us the full unbeeped version? But back to "Tired" for a moment and this is another autobiographical number in which Tommy introduces us to his feelings, well of Pamela for one and hits hard in musical stakes, holding no punches lyrically either.

As we proceed through the album it twists through hard rockin', to music in which a more reflective tone takes hold, even dabbling with an audio more reminiscent to that of the Seattle sound. Overall this proved to be a highly entertaining 38 minutes of sound in which we are offered music and songwriting that is both rich in technical skills and humour, it's nice to be back listening to rock music . Maybe I will take look at those shows on '4' afterall. 9/10

Nick James

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