The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
www.therockpit.net Motley-Crue-Melbourne-24-Sep-2011

MOTLEY CRUE
ROD LAVER ARENA, MELBOURNE
24 September 2011

 

By David Carruthers

 

 

The Bad Boys of Hollywood returned to Australia for the first time in 6 years for a quick 3 show stint along the east coast which attracted mass amounts of fans with litres of hairspray, war paint and sleaze in general.


There was a lot of hype around the stage show for this tour. Although it didn’t have as much as it had the last time they were in Australia in the way of dwarfs or dancers, it did have a massive 360 degree drum roller coaster.

 


I only got into the arena as Brett Michaels was finishing up his last song and as soon as Brett and his band left the stage a huge grey curtain covered the stage to hide what was to come from the main event.

 

Without dimming the lights or playing any intro music the curtain seemed to drop with no hint that the band were even on the stage and straight into some pyro’s and ‘Wild Side’. The crowd went absolutely crazy, everyone was singing along and pumping their fists or metal horns and rocking out like it was 1985.


‘Saints of Los Angeles’ one of the best songs of the night, and a song that really sums up Motley Crue and their lifestyles - or at least past lifestyles - was a huge crowd pleaser. Once again the crowd was singing every word even though the song is relatively new and obviously never been played live in Australia before, except for the shows in Sydney the night before and Brisbane a few nights earlier.


Running through a setlist of greatest hits not too different from the latest “Greatest Hits” repackage which hit Australian stores a little over a month ago, the band went through hits such as ‘Live Wire’, ‘Shout At The Devil’, ‘Same Ol’ Situation (S.O.S)’ and then another massive crowd pleaser ‘Primal Scream’. There was a bit of banter from Vince Neil and Nikki Sixx talking up Australian women and also talking up how Brisbane and Sydney both told them that they were better than Melbourne which obviously got the crowd roaring and trying to show the Crue who really rocked out the most.


Tommy Lee doesn’t like to be hidden behind the drums so he made his way out to the front of the stage to have a chat and pump up the crowd a bit more - as if he needed to - while the road crew set up a big piano at the front of the stage which brought about ‘Home Sweet Home’.

 

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Next up Vince got to strum his guitar for ‘Don’t Go Away Mad’. Halfway through the song there was an awkward moment when at least I kept singing what was meant to be sung and then realised that they had cut the song and gone into a rocking rendition of Cee Lo Greens ‘Fuck You’. This might have been a surprise to a few people but it wasn’t a complete surprise to me as they recently performed a complete cover of the song with Cee Lo at the Hollywood Bowl just a few months ago. You wouldn’t normally expect a hard rock crowd to take a liking to a R&B / Hip Hop song being played at a metal show but I guess when the main lyrics were “Fuck You” and “Fuck Her Too” you kind of expect the crowd to enjoy it.


Leading on from the ending of ‘Don’t Go Away Mad’ brought us to the much anticipated drum solo. It was a special moment to be in a packed house full of Crue fans witnessing Tommy Lee with an amazing video backdrop of special effects going full 360 with his drum kit and playing literally upside down. The actual solo itself wasn’t your normal drum solo, it was more of a Dub Step song to be honest, and it was really Tommy just keeping a beat as opposed to a drum solo of the likes of Neal Peart or Mike Portnoy, but let’s not compare bricks with water as this was a hard rock sleaze show, not a progressive metal show and something as simple as that was more than good enough to hold that as one of the best all round drum solos I’ve ever seen live. You might have seen YouTube videos of the solo online, but you really do need to be there to actually experience this thing in front of you as the YouTube videos just don’t do it any justice at all. As Tommy finished his solo the road crew attached an extra chair to the back of his drum riser so that one lucky fan could get up and go for a ride. While we thought we had the guy on our shoulders as Tommy was definitely pointing our way we were unfortunately disappointed when someone else got up as our guy was getting pulled up by the bouncers.

 

 


After the drum show Mick Mars had his go at a slight guitar solo which as expected didn’t go down nearly aswell as Tommys solo. ‘Looks that Kill’, ‘Dr. Feelgood’, ‘Too Young to Fall in Love’ and then my favourite of the night ‘Too Fast for Love’. Unfortunately at this point you could feel the party was coming towards an end with not a lot of massive hits left to go we got ‘Girls, Girls, Girls’. Last song of the set was the cover of Brownsville Stations ‘Smokin’ In The Boys Room’ which was a real crowd pleaser, and one of those songs that might not be your favourite on an album but was definitely a great song to include in the setlist.


The band left the stage for a very brief minute before returning in jump suits for the one song encore of ‘Kickstart My Heart’. The whole crowd found some extra energy to sing along as loud as they could to this one, and made a lot of noise for Nikki Sixx’s show. Nikki had a tube strapped to him with a tank of fake blood which he spat out at the crowd. It was one of those things you see at a heavy metal concerts that makes you stop and think, “if someone who wasn’t into this music was watching what was happening they would think we were all crazy”. Not one person around me shied away from the blood in fact from my memory it was something that everyone wanted to get on them, I sure wanted to take a bit of the blood stain out with me and we just happened to be in the best spot to cop a huge bucket of blood which landed directly on top of my mates head.


Overall I heard a lot of people complain that Vince Neil wasn’t hitting the notes, or complaining that he left a lot of lines out for the crowd to sing, but from where I stood Vinces voice sounded better than ever considering all the debauchery, drugs and alcohol he’s been through over the years which is no secret to Crue fans or rock fans in general, and yeah he missed a lot of lines, but that’s nothing new for Vince and the real fans would know this, you might not like it but I would take it any day of the year rather than not seeing them at all. Let’s hope we don’t have to wait another 6 years to get the boys back down under, they seemed to enjoy it and so did the crowd.