Aerosmith’s “Music From Another Dimension” Worth the Wait
It has been eight years since Aerosmith has released a studio album. However, that album, “Honkin’ On Bobo,” was a blues cover album. So it has been 11 years since the band has released a studio album of original material (that album being “Just Push Play”). The band’s sound has changed in the span of over four decades, its more recent sound being a little too commercial compared to the band’s glory days in the hard-rocking 1970s. The band’s latest album, “Music from Another Dimension,” isn’t the hard-rocking album fans were expecting, but it still manages to be a very good album.
Aerosmith has been together since 1970. The current line-up (as well as the classic line-up) consists of singer Steven Tyler, guitarists Joe Perry and Brad Whitford, bassist Tom Hamilton and drummer Joey Kramer. Aerosmith’s last three years have been crazy. In November 2009 Perry announced thatTylerhad left the band. Only a day later,Tylersaid he wasn’t leaving the band. This led to a well-publicized feud between Tyler and Perry, leaving the band’s future in question. An example of this took place in 2011 whenTylerjoined the judges’ panel on Fox’s hit singing competition, “American Idol,” which led to some harsh words from Perry. Tyler and Perry patched things up shortly before recording the new album.
The album opens with the rocker “Luv XXX” (reads “Love Three Times”). The song is pretty good and it’s just great to hear Aerosmith after all these years. My only problem with this song is that the chorus sounds a little too much like “Love in an Elevator.” Still, it’s a nice opener that’s almost a rehash of the band’s late 1980s sound.
As for the other 14 tracks, it gets pretty eclectic. This is both good and bad. I do enjoy the soul-infused “Oh Yeah” and the funky “Out Go the Lights.” There’s some great guitar work from Perry and Whitford on those two songs. There are also a few ballads. Okay, maybe one too many ballads. I’ve never been a fan of “I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing,” so I think new songs such as “What Could Have Been Love” and “Another Last Goodbye” are pretty mediocre pop songs. For me, the weakest of the songs is the country-flavored “Can’t Stop Lovin’ You,” which features “American Idol” winner Carrie Underwood. Underwood is a good singer, but why couldn’t this song be on her album withTyler as the guest?
But the album does redeem itself with several rockers. The aforementioned “Luv XXX” is an example. “Street Jesus” is a great bluesy hard rocker that sounds like it could have been a song on any of their earlier albums. Despite the cruddy production, the fast-paced “Lover Alot” is another highlight. Perry even gets to take over lead vocals for “Freedom Fighter” and “Something,” both of which are strong. My personal favorite song off the album is the lead single, “Legendary Child.” The lyrics are autobiographical in a way, withTylersinging about trading “them toys for other joys” (“Toys in the Attic”) and taking “a chance at a high school dance” (“Walk This Way”). The chorus is reminiscent of the chorus in “Sweet Emotion.”
“Music from Another Dimension” is a pretty good album from Aerosmith. Still, it all depends on what kind of Aerosmith fan you are. If you’re expecting another “Toys in the Attic” or “Rocks,” you’ll probably be disappointed. If you like Aerosmith no matter what, you may like this album. Personally, I think any Aerosmith is good, but I do prefer the band’s material from the 1970s more than what has come after. This album was produced by Jack Douglas, who also produced those earlier albums. With Douglas, you’d expect the band to make another “Toys,” “Rocks,” or “Draw the Line.” This really isn’t the case, but whatever this is, “Music from Another Dimension” isn’t bad.