Devil's Got A New Disguise

Aerosmith

Sony, 2006

http://www.aerosmith.com

REVIEW BY: Benjamin Ray

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/07/2006

For those of you keeping track, this is Aerosmith's seventh American hits collection. The band has released 14 studio albums in since 1973. That means there is now one hits disc for every two studio discs.

Talk about ridiculous and redundant. How often do we need to hear the same songs? How often does Sony expect us to part ways with our cash to hear songs we hear on the radio every day? Oh, wait, because there are two new songs.

Know what? If you're a big Aero fan who needs these two songs, go buy this, rip 'em to your computer and toss this in a bin. You have memorized the other tunes on here already. They aren't even necessary: "Sedona Sunrise" is the same damn ballad they've been rehashing since 1987 and the title track is a chunky riff-rocker, although it's not half bad, I guess.bim_ad_daily_vault_print_250

The original hook for this one is that it tries to capture Aerosmith's entire career up to 2006, which actually hadn't been done yet (the ones that tried were double-disc sets). But you know good and well that the emphasis will be on the power ballads of the 90s, which means this comp is aimed at those of us who grew up on "Cryin'" and had a crush on Alicia Silverstone.

The first five songs pay lip service to the band's glory days of the 70s, and since you can guess what they are, I won't bother. However, "Walk This Way" is missing in the original form, substituted with a shortened version of the Run-DMC take, for no apparent reason. Also, "Mama Kin" is here, although the target audience for this probably will skip it every time it comes on.

Then the late 80s comeback hits begin, and you know what those are too.

Then the 90s ballads begin, and there are four of them (unless you consider "Livin' On the Edge" a ballad). None of the more uptempo songs of the time are around, such as "Eat the Rich," "Just Push Play" or "Falling in Love (Is So Hard on the Knees)."

So, in short, this disc does not do justice to a great American rock band (nothing from Get Your Wings?) and seems to present them almost as a pop-rock Vegas act, a title they would live up to 2 years later with Rockin' the Joint

You can't dock a release that still has classic music like "Back in the Saddle," "Rag Doll" and "Sweet Emotion." Sure, everyone has their own take on what a single-disc overview of Aerosmith would look like, but it certainly has to be better than this. No devil to disguise here, just a crass repackaging of the best shopping mall songs Aerosmith had to offer. Don't blame this one on the band and go pick up O Yeah instead, which accurately paints the picture in a deserved two discs.

Rating: C-

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© 2006 Benjamin Ray and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Sony, and is used for informational purposes only.