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Archive for the ‘Aerosmith’ Category

Don’t Know Why It Is At All: Universal Releases New Aerosmith Compilation

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Aerosmith hasn’t released an album of new material since 2004 (and that was a covers record, so the last album of original material was in 2001). Recent affairs between Steven Tyler and Joe Perry have veered toward acrimony, after Tyler injured himself on tour and began insisting his desire to work on “Brand Tyler” (i.e.: a solo album); this ultimately manifested itself into a gig replacing Simon Cowell as a judge on American Idol, a gig that has been bizarre but not disastrous.

It would not be a surprise to see Aerosmith appear toward the season finale of Idol, given the sheer amount of viewers it’d give them. But Geffen, the band’s home from 1984 to 1995 (and a label owned by Universal Music Group, which starting this season will provide the contract for Idol winners), is jumping on Tyler’s newfound wave of popularity by issuing Tough Love: Best of the Ballads, a new compilation of entirely old material.

This set has already been roundly criticized by others for not even bothering to live up to its title; hit singles “Love in an Elevator,” “Rag Doll,” “Janie’s Got a Gun” and “Livin’ on the Edge” are not particularly well-defined as “ballads,” but they are included anyway. Of course, the band’s most notable ballad, “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” from the soundtrack to Armageddon (1998), was released during their second run with Columbia and is not included (something tells me Geffen wanted to spend as little on licensing as possible). However, early hit “Dream On” closes the set. It wouldn’t be surprising to find this is a live version, which is how Geffen padded out Young Lust: The Aerosmith Anthology.

If you’ve got to have it, Tough Love is out May 10 and can be pre-ordered here. The track list is after the jump. (Thanks to VVN Music for the tip.)

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Written by Mike Duquette

March 31, 2011 at 10:08

Back Tracks: Aerosmith, Part II – The Geffen Years and Beyond

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Way back in January we did a Back Tracks feature on Aerosmith’s Columbia discography, just as Steven Tyler was beginning to crazy it up on American Idol. However, since then Tyler has become a solid asset for Idol fans, and it wouldn’t be surprising if the end of the show’s current season didn’t dovetail into some sort of Aerosmith resurgence.

With that in mind, let’s take a look from where we left the band in the last Back Tracks special. 1982’s Rock in a Hard Place saw original guitarists Joe Perry and Brad Whitford gone (Whitford appeared on one track), Tyler almost irreparably strung out and the music taking a nosedive. Nonetheless, the group continued to tour, and had something toward success when, in 1984, Perry and Hamilton reunited with the band. A resultant tour, Back in the Saddle, was a moderate success tempered by the fact that the band hadn’t released a new album in several years, and the band were still battling their substance-based demons.

Things were only looking so good for the band. But they’d about to reach a second plateau of success that most bands can only dream of.

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Written by Mike Duquette

March 1, 2011 at 17:31

Back Tracks: Aerosmith Part I – The Columbia Years

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Aerosmith isn’t dead, but it may as well be. Frontman Steven Tyler was preposterous in his first televised appearance as a judge on American Idol (though there was some very funny writing about the whole ordeal), and if you’re like me, you wish Tyler had stepped away from such ridiculous duties and went on to perform with what many have called America’s greatest rock and roll band – even if it sounded more like their recent, pop-oriented rock instead of their bluesy, pre-metal days.

To celebrate Tyler, guitarists Joe Perry and Brad Whitford, bassist Tom Hamilton and drummer Joey Kramer, we’re taking a trip down memory lane through the music of Aerosmith. They’re not a band bursting with vault tracks, though they’ve had their share of remasters, box sets and compilations, as you’ll soon see over the next few days. Walk this way toward our first part of the Aerosmith journey, which covers their first stint on Columbia Records. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

January 20, 2011 at 16:48