This movie stunk. Somebody had the idea: “Hey, let’s get Andrew Dice Clay to headline a raunchy comedy movie, and get a hard rock soundtrack! The kids will love it.” The movie and soundtrack were loaded with famous names: Wayne Newton, Sheila E., Vince Neil, Priscilla Presley, Robert England and so on. It didn’t help; the movie tanked and its resultant soundtrack was a hodge-podge of music that no one listener would like all the way through.
There is plenty to dislike on this CD.
A past-his-prime Dion remade “Sea Cruise” with Don Was, rendering it limp like a stunted child of the 1980’s. Skip the unbelievably terrible Sheila E. track. The Teddy Pendergrass song is also pretty awful, in a nondescript 80’s fashion. Tone Lōc dropped a turd with “Can’t Get Enough”, despite a phat Hammond organ riff that must have been sampled from something much better. Finally, Andrew Dice Clay taints both the band Yello and the song “I Ain’t Got You” with his voice. The Yello track is just synth music with movie dialogue on top. Then “I Ain’t Got You” is less than two minutes long, so at least it’s relatively painless. I don’t know if somebody had the idea to launch Dice as a rock star next, but if they did, it failed miserably.
There are a few songs that could be considered keepers.
Billy Idol was experiencing a comeback at the time, with the classic-tinged “Cradle of Love”. It combined new wave production values with rock and roll stylings of the 1950’s. Striking while the iron Idol was hot, the song is included on this soundtrack as the opening number. It was Idol’s first single, post-Steve Stevens. It featured his new guitarist Mark Younger-Smith, and ex-Ozzy bassist Phil Soussan who briefly appeared in the movie as one of Vince Neil’s bandmates. (He later became one of Vince’s bandmates in real life.)
Speaking of Vince, Motley Crue contributed the Dr. Feelgood outtake “Rock ‘n Roll Junkie”, well before it was released on Decade of Decadence. This mix is slightly different than the one commonly released on Motley albums. Vince sings an audible “Uh!” sound at the 30 second mark on the usual versions. That is absent on the Ford Fairlane mix. There is also a stronger flanging effect on the bass during the intro of the common version. So, for Motley diehards, this CD presents one mix that you don’t own elsewhere in your collection.
I have no idea how Queensryche got involved with this soundtrack; they were even on a different record label. “Last Time in Paris” was an accessible rock track; an outtake from the sessions for the forthcoming Empire. It would not have been one of the best Empire tracks, but it’s good enough for fans of vintage ‘Ryche. Chris DeGarmo employs a slide on his guitar solo, and Geoff Tate throws down a sassy lead vocal.
The final track was also an outtake from a forthcoming release: Richie Sambora’s Stranger in this Town solo debut. Sambora recorded a classy cover of Hendrix’s “The Wind Cries Mary”. Sambora was displaying previously unseen depth and blues chops. “The Wind Cries Mary” was later included on a deluxe edition of Stranger in this Town, but by and large most Bon Jovi fans have not heard it. With this track, Richie had the best tune on the soundtrack.
The verdict on this “rock and roll detective” movie sountrack? It gets the dreaded Flaming Turd.