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Released: Apr 6, 2010
Label: EMI (US), Universal Music (Japan), Roadrunner Records (Europe)
Number Of Tracks: 14
With his self-titled solo debut, Slash proves that venturing out on one's own can actually be a wise career move.
UG Team, on april 02, 2010 30 of 33 people found this review helpful
Sound: Slash has pulled out the big guns for his debut solo CD, and Guns N' Roses (and Velvet Revolver) devotees will be relieved to know that the iconic guitarist doesn't misfire. You might make the automatic assumption that Slash would deliver an album full of his trademark blues-rock riffage, and there is some truth to that notion. But the self-titled CD, although creatively driven by Slash, branches off into several musical arenas due largely in part to the eclectic group of musicians recruited for the project. There aren't many artists who would have the guts to include the likes of Adam Levine (Maroon 5), Fergie (Black Eyed Peas), and Iggy Pop on the same album, but you've got to hand it to the man with the top hat. He works it out.
The album's 14 tracks (which include the last-minute addition Back From Cali, featuring Myles Kennedy on vocals) always bolster trademark Slash moments, but the unique styles of the guest artists are also huge driving forces. It's a veritable laundry list of the who's who in rock, with Slash usually writing the musical portion with specific individuals in mind. Iggy Pop's We're All Gonna Die certainly carries the most punk-heavy vibe on the album, while the Lemmy Kilmeister-fronted Doctor Alibi contains all of the attitude and rawness one would hope and pray would embody the spirit of Motorhead. With pretty much every track, you'll receive a good dose of soloing from Slash, who wows with his wah-fueled work in the first single By The Sword (featuring Wolfmother's Andrew Stockdale).
Utilizing the skills of Fergie and/or crooner Levine could possibly induce fear and trepidation into any Guns N' Rose purist. Thankfully Slash's songwriting is steering the ship. Fergie's performance on Beautiful Dangerous takes a huge leap from her usual hip-hop repertoire, and the slithering rock tune ends up being one of the most satisfying tracks on the album. Levine does not necessarily shock with the pop-rock ballad Gotten, but Slash has mentioned in interviews that writing that particular track was a labor-intensive process. Between its intricate arrangement (complete with a string section) and emotional intensity, Gotten is an uncharacteristic, but oddly satisfying offering.
For as much time as Slash poured into a complex arrangement like the one heard in Gotten, it's the straight-on jam song that makes one of the biggest impressions. Watch This, which showcases the talents of drummer Dave Grohl and bassist Duff McKagan, is a grinding rock instrumental that is reminiscent of GN'R's early days. Apparently Grohl refused to provide vocals, and the man must have known what he was doing. Watch This is a celebration of all the qualities that has elevated Slash to guitar god. // 9
Lyrics: While Slash is essentially the man behind the music, the vocalists took control of the lyrics. Given the varied nature of the artists, Slash's record delves into a broad range of themes. In one moment the record tackles relationships (Levine'sGotten ) and in the next Kid Rock's I Hold On is delivering the staple message of just-take-life-one-day-at-a-time. Who gets the award for being most brutally honest? Mr. Iggy Pop in We're Gonna Die, of course. You can't deny the punk appeal of lyrics like: I'm in the mood; So let's intrude; Pee on the ground and jump around. // 9
Overall Impression: Don't expect a carbon copy of Appetite For Destruction or Contraband with Slash's self-titled debut. The guitarist has plenty more up his sleeve, and his diverse musical tastes have never been more evident. While that variety may still scare some listeners out there, the vast majority of tracks are memorable, infectious, and inspired. Slash channels Jimmy Page with By The Sword, and may singlehandedly revive Ozzy Osbourne's music career with Crucify The Dead. A word of advice to any beloved musician who is looking to go solo in the future: Take notes from Slash. // 9
unregistered, on april 12, 2010 2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: In Slash's debut solo album, he goes all out, using his vast knowledge and musical range to create an album that serves as both a reminder that he is one of the best musicians out in the world today and also shows that he is much more than the rocker that we've associated him to be. Slash is known for his hard riffs and fast but precision solos from his days in Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver, but he apparently has been saving some of his writings for this album in particular because it is some of the best guitar work he has ever recorded and rivals that of his recordings in Guns N' Roses. This is an album that ranges from the hard and heavy songs such as Doctor Alibi with Lemme Kilmeister from Motorhead to the very melodic and beautiful recordings such as Gotten with Adam Levine. While others may complain that type of structure where different singers from different genres can ruin an album, it makes this one very unique as it pulls energy off from every song that keeps it from falling into boredom. One of the strongest songs on the record I Hold On with Kid Rock makes this case true. It also showcases Slash's ability to play guitar at many level as he shows that he still produces great guitar riffs such as in Crucify The Dead with Ozzy Osbourne, but also plays precision melody guitar such as in By The Sword with Andrew Stockdale from Wolfmother, even including aspects of thrash and heavy metal in Nothing To Say featuring M Shadows from Avenged Sevenfold. The main pull from this album however is the fact that he uses a singer for each different song from established rockers such as Chris Cornell for Promise to surprising selections such as Fergie for Beautiful Dangerous which is actually one of the better songs on the album. Slash wrote his music for each song for a particular singer in mind with the exception of the instrumental Watch This which features ex-Guns N' Roses and current Velvet Revolver bandmate Duff McKagan and Dave Grohl on drums. This was a very risky move to the fans who have adored Slash for years but he knew who was right for the job and chose wisely as each one performed their singing to excellence, bringing their own style and adding it to each song making it unique. Regardless of who is singing or how the guitar is being played, it still has that signature Slash sound to it but he is also able not to out perform his selection of singers which creates a great balance between those two aspects. The drums are not as showcased as one would believe from a rock album, nor is the bass other than in Promise but provide a good feel to the album. This is however Slash's album, so lead and rhythm guitar are going to be more prominent. Even so, the album sounds great throughout and has a nice balance as well. It's not an album that you can single out particular songs to listen to individually as each one is great but if you were to listen to a few then the best ones in my opinion are listen below.
Crucify The Dead with Ozzy OsbourneBeautiful Dangerous with FergiePromise with Chris CornellDoctor Alibi with Lemme KilmeisterI Hold On with Kid RockNothing To Say with M Shadows // 9
Lyrics: Obviously Slash isn't a singer so he did not develop the lyrics but rather let the vocalist who would sing on their particular song write the lyrics themselves. A very wise move on his part. It's hard to determine what song or rather who the best is lyrically as each recording has individual aspects of each ones personality. Each one can make a case for that, whether it be the established rock singers Ozzy Osbourne or Lemme Kilmeister to the more melodic singers such as Chris Cornell or Adam Levine. The only way that you can truly appreciate the lyrical structure is to understand who the singers are and who they have sung for or about. Basically, the lyrics are varied for each vocalist but they bring their A' game and showcase their own talents to make each song worthy to listen to, both instrumentally and lyrically to understand each songs meaning. // 9
Overall Impression: For years we portrayed Slash as the hard rocker in the top hat, the man we all wanted to be. With the release of his solo album, he know not only shows us that he still rocks twenty plus years after the release of Appetite For Destruction but has also become of the best guitarist to grace the music world. He has worked with the likes of Michael Jackson, something some frown upon but others see as a way to show how far his musical tastes go and his first solo album shows that he can work with a wide range of artists and can write music that is appealing to both the rock and roll fan and the pop fan, even if fans of Slash don't like it. The fact here is that you have to be diverse in what you listen to and that is what Slash has seemed to go with here. Regardless of what his intentions were, he has made a great album for himself and his fans and hopefully it will not be the last. I may be a bit biased seeing as Slash is one of my main influences since I play guitar so don't take my review completely serious but try and understand my view on it. That is beside the point though. Whether or not Velvet Revolver returns, I'm sure that we will see another solo album from Slash in the near future and another reason to love his music. // 9
AlexGary, on june 15, 2010 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: When I bought this album, honestly, I wasn't sure if I will like it or not. Why? The choices of the singers. I wasn't fan of all the singers on the album but I still stay positive. There's so many different singers that I thought it was almost impossible to love all of these songs. Surprise! It sounds really great and innovative. The variety is so large. Great ballads, great rock n roll and metal songs. Even if it's not the singer that we're used to hear with Slash, we can recognize the Slash influence and all his talent. His guitar sound fits with so much voices and kinds music that anybody can love at least one song. For example, metal fans will absolutely fall in love with the powerful and head-banging song "Nothing To Say" of A7X singer M. Shadows, people who like cute ballad song will love "Gotten" of Adam Levine, or the great old rock n roll sound on "Doctor Alibi", "We're All Gonna Die" or "Baby Can't Drive" (bonus track). This album opened my eyes on talent that I never noticed before like Nicole Scherzinger, Fergie, Myles Kennedy (I didn't know very much Alter Bridge) and Rocco DeLuca. Impossible to hate the album from the beginning to the end. Everybody will have great feedback and surprise about the sound of Slash works.
For people who wants to hear Velvet Revolver or old Guns N Roses, that's not the good record even if Izzy (Ghost), Duff (Watch This) and Steven Adler (Baby Can't drive) contribute to this album. That's Slash's work and we can recognize stuff that no Slash's projects will do. // 8
Lyrics: That's not only the great solos and guitar riffs that we appreciated on this record. The voices keep an important place on the album. First of all, we can recognize the kind of lyrics that singers use in their own projects mixed with a rock-n-roll side. The perfect example is on "Beautiful Dangerous", Fergie sings : "I hear the thunder thumping and my heart starts jumping and that's when I spin on the pole." In another side, we can hear some easy-going lyrics, very simple like on "We're All Gonna Die", where Iggy Pop, 63 years old, is still yound in his mind : "We're all gonna die, so let's get high (...) so let's be nice. I'm in the mood so let's intrude. Pee on the ground and jump around."
One of the highlights of the album is "Starlight" by Myles Kennedy. His singing is so unbelievable and innovative. Honestly, according to me, if Velvet Revolver is still searching for a singer, I think they had the right guy in front of him. Another singer who shows his talent is Andrew Stockdale from Wolfmother. Before Slash declared that "By The Sword" will be the first single, I was sure it will be a single. Purely clean and absolutely beautiful.
According to me, Nicole Scherzinger and Alice Cooper make an awesome duet on "Baby Can't Drive". This song is one of the most powerful songs of the album. I knew that this one was a must when I hear Miss Pussycat-Dolls screams at the top of his lungs at the beginning. Unfortunately, this is a bonus track. Go buy it on iTunes if you don't have it on your album version.
Adam Levine and Rocco De Luca, who contribute on the two ballads of the record ("Gotten" and "Saint is a Sinner Too"), show so much emotion is their singing method. Mission accomplished!
There's one instrumental song "Watch This!" but it should be nice to hear Grohl's voice. (Dave Grohl said that he didn't want to sing for a project like that 'cause he's not into it so he suggests to make a jam with him behind his drum.) // 9
Overall Impression: On the album, you will discover great mixed artists, so many surprises, great riffs and solos from Slash, and so much rock n roll! This is really nice to feelthe great chemistry between Slash and guests. We have the proof that Slash can adapt his guitar sound to any styles.
Best songs: Starlight, By The Sword, Nothing To Say, Doctor Alibi.
Worst song: Unfortunately, I'm not a big fan of Kid Rock, so "I Hold On" is not a must to me.
It's a album to add to its collection because we can know why Slash knows the definition of rock n' roll! // 9
GuitarGod Tone, on july 07, 2010 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: When you listen to this CD you are automatically thrown into the classic Slash sound. The much anticipated solo album from Slash delivers on bringing a quality rock album. Such tracks as "Crucify the Dead" featuring Ozzy Osbourne and "Doctor Alibi" show off that classic Slash rock sound that has made him such a guitar icon. While other tracks as "Nothing to Say" feat M Shadows shows off his depth to expand to other genres of rock with his speed playing lick. // 9
Lyrics: For my taste I thought that each guest vocalist added just the right touch to the song with the exception of a few. Tracks such as "We're All Gonna Die" feat Iggy Pop and "By The Sword" feat Andrew Stockdale are all combined with the technique of Slash perfectly. While other tracks dissapointed me such as "Gotten" feat Adam Levine this track just seemed a bit forced and didn't mesh as well as the other tracks did. // 9
Overall Impression: While Slash and the gang look for a replacement for their band Velvet Revolver I thought this was a great CD to introduce to majority of people who aren't familiar with the wonderful Slash sound. Songs such as "Beautiful Dangerous" feat Fergie are a great introduction to the classic Slash sound. Out of the fourteen tracks on the album I would say the tracks that stand out to me are "Crucify the Dead", "Doctor Alibi","We're All Gonna Die and "Beautiful Dangerous". If I had the choice to buy this album or not I would definitely buy it, if not for the great guitarwork but also for the interesting guest work on the album. // 9
matthewb60023, on august 09, 2011 1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sound: One of the best purchases I have made! All of the songs have so much depth other than Iggy Pop's - "We're All Gonna Die" I mean the guitar work is awesome but the lyricss arn't serious which is also a good thing. But in all honesty its the best guitarist ever doing what he does best! I love that guy and I love that album! It wasn't what I expected it was better! I expected all the songs would be upbeat yet my favourite is "Gotten" amazing classical guitar work with a touch of rock and some very sweet + deep love filled lyrics. Nice work Slash! // 10
Lyrics: Strong voices throughout all the singers had immense skill. "Gotten" has very touching lyrics. I love it! // 10
Overall Impression: I don't believe I know any album like it! The best songs in my opinion were "Gotten", "Back To Cali" + "Watch This". I absolutely love the guitar work on every song and hate nothing! This is my favourite album of all time. Finally if it was stolen I'd definately purchase it again + again + again! // 10