MOTLEY CRUE – 20th Century Masters – The Millennium Collection (2003 Universal)
As a change of pace, this review focuses not on what is on the album, but what was left off. This 20th Century Masters is more than a little shoddy, as this series can often be. So let’s talk about what it is not.
- Too Fast For Love
“Piece of Your Action” is a great little ditty from the debut record Too Fast For Love. What you’re missing though: the speedy single “Live Wire”! It makes little sense to have this one without “Live Wire”.
“Shout at the Devil” and “Too Young to Fall in Love”: Great choices. Both are classic 80’s metal. What you’re missing is hit single “Looks that Kill”. But as Meat Loaf says, two out of three ain’t bad.
“Home Sweet Home” is Motley’s biggest hit ballad ever, but where is the Brownsville Station cover “Smokin’ in the Boys Room”? Can you believe it’s not on here? And it’s not because it’s a cover, because, well, we’ll get there.
- Girls, Girls, Girls
The title track makes good sense to include, but why is “All in the Name Of…” on here instead of “Wild Side”? Also missing, but understandably so, is the ballad “You’re All I Need” which never made much impact. “Wild Side” though remained a concert staple to the end, so that’s one you’ll need to find elsewhere.
- Dr. Feelgood
There were five singles on this album, and of course you can’t include them all on a 20th Century Masters CD. What you do need are the title track and lead single “Dr. Feelgood”, and obviously “Kickstart My Heart”. “Kickstart” was an explosive statement by the band, proving they were as mighty as ever without the drugs. Those two songs embodied the album, but there’s no “Feelgood” here. Inexplicable! Certainly one of the biggest oversights on this disc.
Great song! Not on this CD!
- Decade of Decadence
For reasons that are unexplained and perhaps best left that way, instead of including any of the above better known songs, 20th Century Masters has the far less famed “Rock ‘N’ Roll Junkie”, and Sex Pistols cover “Anarchy in the UK”. “Junkie” is a Feelgood outtake, original released on The Adventures of Ford Fairlane soundtrack in 1990. “Anarchy” was recorded for Motley’s first greatest hits, Decade of Decadence. Neither song is essential, and both are on Decade. Why are they here? “Primal Scream”, which was a powerful single, is a must have. But it’s not here. Yet another song you’d still have to get elsewhere, because it’s awesome and important.
No complaints here. “Hooligan’s Holiday” is included from 1994’s self-titled album with John Corabi on vocals. Nice to see this single represented instead of ignored.
At this point, for a compilation like 20th Century Masters, I don’t think you need to explore the 90’s. But, from 1997’s dreadful Generation Swine comes the title track. Not the minor hit single “Afraid” mind you, but the title track which did nothing and went nowhere. Baffling!
Ending the album with “Hell on High Heels” brought the compilation up to date for its 2003 release date. Unfortunately, there was nothing on New Tattoo worth bringing to the table. Tommy Lee had left and there was a serious dip in quality, even after Generation Swine. Although it was the only Motley album featuring late drummer Randy Castillo, New Tattoo is simply a turd with no songs that are up to snuff. Crappy way to close a pretty crap compilation, though. Motley Crue’s instalment of 20th Century Masters sounds as if it’s a single disc from a double CD compilation, and the other CD’s been lost. Sorry Motley, this CD gets the dreaded Flaming Turd.