MÖTLEY CRÜE - Shout At The Devil (40th Anniversary Edition)
October 6, 2023, 2 months ago
Mötley Crüe are one of the most important bands in the early ‘80s, along with Iron Maiden, Twisted Sister, Def Leppard, W.A.S.P., Quiet Riot, Ratt, Dokken, Dio, KISS, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, at the foundation to my love for heavy metal music. Like their peers it was the complete package, the music, image, attitude, stage show, MTV videos, and the soundtrack to my early teenage years. The video for "Live Wire" (off the debut Too Fast for Love) was just the start. But when I saw the video for "Looks That Kill" in 1984 (Shout At The Devil album was released September 1983, and got in on cassette asap), magazine pictures and ads in Hit Parader and Circus, it was another level.
Shout At The Devil was heavier, nastier Mötley, both the music and the image. This was a band you would not want to run into in a dark alley. Now, 40 years later Shout At The Devil gets its flowers with an anniversary special edition release. An album also that will always be in my top 20 list of Best Heavy Metal Albums of the ‘80s.
This 40th anniversary edition comes with a bunch of goodies. The album on vinyl, CD, and cassette, plus a vinyl of seven demos and rarities, and two 7” singles. Now, I have a stereo system with old school speakers and compared the remastered vinyl to the original (which I still have), and CD remaster from 1999 on Motley Records (BMG Music) to this paper sleeve. The original vinyl from the ‘80s has more mid-range and sounds fine, but the remaster brings in more bottom end and drums and warms up the mix but not to where it's too much or muddy. The CD’s both are louder sonically with a bit more high end without losing the bass and drums, and both the vinyl and CDs allow space for the symbols. The 7” single for "Too Young To Fall In Love" is a "remix" but I don't hear a difference.
On to the demos, four of these have previously appeared on the 1999 remaster, the album title track, "Looks That Kill", "Hotter Than Hell" became "Louder Than Hell" for the next album Theater Of Pain, and "I Will Survive" which is ok and I can see why it didn't make an album, sounds unfinished. Unlike many other demos included on remasters and special editions the Crüe songs are properly mixed, just rougher, a couple slightly different arrangements, solos, with less polish than heard on the actual album.
And I like what Vince does vocally in these early versions with extra "wows" and other alternate pronunciation and inflections, the ride out on "Looks That Kill". "Black Widow" is a well-known song not to make an album and has a passive delivery and vibe relative to something on Too Fast for Love like Merry-Go-Round and "Starry Eyes".
Other items in the box includes a devil candle holder, pentagram felt bag, band member tarot cards, pentagram séance board, a metal pentagram 7” adapter, and two Shout At The Devil album cover art prints. This box is a must have for any Crüe fan.