Full Bluntal Nugity

Ted Nugent

Spitfire, 2002


REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


It's been well over 20 years since Ted Nugent unleashed Double Live Gonzo! on the public, at the height of his career. Since then, the Motor City Madman has found himself battling decreasing record sales, the maturing of his audience, the rise of hundreds of bands who learned their licks at the feet of the Nuge and the commercial rise and fall of heavy metal.

Through it all, Nugent has been a survivor, though one can question whether he's thrived musically. (No references are being made to Nugent's stint in Damn Yankees.) His latest release, Full Bluntal Nugity, is evidence that quite possibly Nugent has stagnated. Featuring only one relatively new track, Nugent's third live outing sounds more like an aging rocker trying to hold on to his days of glory than a rock pioneer continuing to plow new trails.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Recorded on New Year's Eve 2000 at Nugent's annual Whiplash Bash in Detroit, Nugent and his band - bassist Marco Mendoza and drummer Tommy Aldridge - plow through songs which any real fan probably owns several copies of. With the exception of the opening instrumental "Klstrphk" (add a few vowels to see what it's really saying), only "Fred Bear" approaches anything past 1980. Too bad; this could have been a great vehicle for Nugent to remind people about some of the forgotten albums in his career. Anything would have been better than Nugent's occasional ode to Jimi Hendrix scattered throughout the show.

As a vocalist, Nugent at his best was merely marginal. Now in his fifties, Nugent's vocals have smoothed out a little bit, but one does miss the maniacal shrieks he became known for on such tracks as "Cat Scratch Fever" and "Free For All". Sadly, Nugent doesn't seem to have the kind of vocal power these tracks all but beg for. Mendoza does an admirable job on "Hey Baby," doing his best Derek St. Holmes and holding his own quite well.

The most interesting part of Full Bluntal Nugity, ironically, is the newest song, "Fred Bear" - and also is the only acoustic number performed on this disc. Yes, Nugent seems to stretch it out a tad too long, but he does capture something in this version that hasn't been approached in the studio version. Nugent claims he's taking the audience to a campfire with this one - and he succeeds.

Granted, fans would probably feel cheated if all of Nugent's hits were absent from Full Bluntal Nugity - but by focusing on almost all hits, tracks from albums like Weekend Warriors, Little Miss Dangerous, Spirit Of The Wild ("Fred Bear" notwithstanding) and Penetrator are ignored. Again, too bad.

Nugent's days as superstar are all but over except in his own mind, and Full Bluntal Nugity is a reminder of that sad fact. Pick this one up only if you absolutely must have every album in Nugent's discography.

Rating: D

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2001 Christopher Thelen 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 Spitfire, and is used for informational purposes only.