Thursday, August 2, 2012

CONCERT REVIEW: Mötley Crüe (Tampa, FL - 7/28/12)


"It's such a fine
line between
stupid and clever."

 -David St. Hubbins

Mötley Crüe - Tampa, FL / July 28, 2012
(Photo: Rhonda McMahen)
Mötley Crüe stormtrooped the stage at Tampa's 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre (yes, that really is the name of the venue) promptly at 8PM on July 28th and the ear-splitting, lowbrow 90-minute F-bomb shower / pryo exhibition / sex show  ensued.

Sporting a glittery denim-type vest with the words, "I Love Single Moms" printed prominently across the back, husky frontman Vince Neil provided sporadic vocals as the Crüe ploughed through a string of predictable arena rock anthems from its 1980s platinum-selling glory days, including, "Kickstart My Heart," "Girls, Girls, Girls," "Live Wire" and "Dr. Feelgood."

The band's infamous stage show is not the only thing that recently has expanded in the Crüe camp, and founder / bassist Nikki Sixx limited his typical prowling to his side of the stage — venturing beyond his zone occasionally only to spit in a more centralized locale.

(Photo: Christopher Long)
Along the way, fans were treated to such shenanigans as water dousings with high-powered hoses, admin- istered by the intimidating-looking masked stagehands wearing matching red jumpsuits. The hijinx continued as said stagehands blasted smoke from fire ex- tinguisher-type devices into the faces of several of the front row faithful. Ah, good times to be sure! And who wouldn't love to be one of the lucky VIP package buyers who had the honor of being spat on by Sixx repeatedly throughout the show? But hey, at least the larger-than-life bassist wasn't beating up any photo- graphers.

Drummer and showman extraordinaire, Tommy  Lee, scored big. Manning a center stage piano, the shirt- less Lee led his band in a mighty rendition of their iconic power ballad, "Home Sweet Home" — but not before dropping a couple of spirited GD-bombs and articulating clearly to the 15,000+ fans that they were in fact, ALL "motherfuckers." And for the second year in a row, Lee's death-defying rollercoaster drum solo was a thrilling highlight.

Perhaps it would be more fitting if the
"Dr. Feelgood" back-up singers were
replaced by the Krispy Kreme girls.
As a mature adult, I've discovered that often in life, less is more. And honestly, I'm personally not the least bit impressed with, or enticed by, the endless parade of paid strippers, showgirls and back-up "singers" typically pre- sented onstage during Mötley Crüe performances. To me, it's simply gratuitous, over-the-top and much too cal- culated to possess any titillating wow-factor. Regardless of whether the chicks are making out with each other, grinding on a church pew or hanging from the rafters, struggling to free themselves from strait jackets — the imagery seems more silly than sexy.

Oddly, it was the ever-frail and oh-so pale Mick Mars who delivered the most compelling individual performance of the four Crüe members. Dressed all in black, with a black hat pulled down, hiding most of his face and wearing  smeared, sinister-looking black  makeup, the  solemn guitar hero chose simply to let the music do his talking while preserving his iconic mystique.

In sum, despite the smoke and mirrors, the Mötley performance was simply crüde and paled in comparison to the quality, rock professionalism of headliners, KISS.

-Christopher Long
(August 2012)

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  1. go see justin bieber then you ever get laid

    1. Thanks, Anonymous!

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