Thursday, 30 September 2010

CD Review: Nothing's Shocking, by Jane's Addiction (1988)

Certainly one of the weirder side-roads traveled in the heavy metal journey, Jane's Addiction were briefly touted in some circles as the next big thing. Fortunately, their unique brand of drug-inspired, swirly wall-of-sound metal proved to be a creative cul-de-sac, and in Nothing's Shocking we are just left with something....interesting.

The album operates within a very narrow creative range. Perry Farrell's high-pitched vocals and Dave Navarro's beefy guitar are dominant, but Eric A. on bass and Stephen Perkins on drums are also pleasantly prominent.

The songs are never less that listenable, although it may take a few listens to get used to the groove that the band is after. However, none of the material rises above what quickly proves to be a repeated formula of mid-tempo, thickly layered music, with equal measures of metal and psychedelia influence.

The slightly more up-tempo tunes like Had A Dad and Pigs In Zen succeed in imposing more of a personality, while Ted, Just Admit It (with a terrific bass line) and Mountain Song alternate between strange and stranger, but work well all the same.

The rest of the tracks generally just sit there like a fog: intriguing to look at from the outside, but not as fascinating from within.


Perry Farrell - Vocals
David Navarro - Guitar
Eric A. - Bass
Stephen Perkins - Drums

Songlist (ratings out of 10):

1. Up The Beach - 7
2. Ocean Size - 6
3. Had A Dad - 8
4. Ted, Just Admit It - 8
5. Standing In The Shower...Thinking - 7
6. Summertime Rolls - 7
7. Mountain Song - 8
8. Idiots Rule - 7
9. Jane Says - 7
10. ...Thank You Boys... - n/a (short)
11. Pigs In Zen - 8

Average: 7.30

Produced by Dave Jerden and Perry Farrell.
Engineered by Dave Jerden and Ronnie S. Champagne.
Mixed by Dave Jerden and Perry Farrell.
Mastered by Steve Hall.

All Ace Black Blog Heavy Metal CD Reviews are here.

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