Mother's Milk review by Red Hot Chili Peppers

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  • Released: Jan 1, 1989
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 3.9 (192 votes)
Red Hot Chili Peppers: Mother's Milk
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Sound — 8
I went to see the Chilis in Hyde Park on the first night (19th June) and I was disappointed. Not by the band, but by the sound. Unfortunately, we didn't manage to shove our way to the front, believing the sound set up would be a blast wherever you stood. How wrong we were! This is why I bought this album on its release, so I could appreciate what it should have sounded like. I have left it this long before submitting any reviews because I wanted to play it to death first. It's been played everywhere; my car stereo, my computer at work, my home system, and on my brother's very decent set up at his flat in London. It sounds raw and raucous, exactly how it should, and exactly how I wish it had sounded when I was there. The more discerning music aficionado will notice a number of musical influences on this album (particularly the bluesy Led Zep feel). More so because it is a greatest hits concert recording, rather than an album of records made from a particular year / period.

Lyrics — 10
I have always been amazed by the ability of bands whose lyrical work is very complex, to recreate flawlessly these lyrics live on stage. Lets face it, certain Chili tracks, such as 'Can't Stop', 'By The Way' and the tongue twisting 'Give It Away' are nigh on impossible for even the most hardened fan to remember word for word. So full credit to Anthony for his faultless performance. Also top marks to John for his jean tightening rendition of Donna Summer's 'I Feel Love', although unsurprisingly he could only manage one verse! Overall, and once again, raw and raucous. Charlotte Church it ain't.

Overall Impression — 8
A few tracks I could have done without, and a number I would like to have included. I prefer the Chilis when they are more harmonious with a chunky bass riff and bluesy guitar sound, rather than the more 'in yer face' stuff which at times borders on hard core rap (Right on Time for example). There didn't seem to be anything from 'One Hot Minute', which admittedly wasn't their best album, but tracks like Falling Into Grace and Aeroplane are class and would have gone down well. And what was the ending of 'Give it Away' all about? It was almost as if they had time to kill. Still, well worth the price, and will be on my decks for years to come.

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