“Oh life it's misunderstood them / So they close their eyes / And dream of better days / Oh life it's misunderstood yeah / Life's not always fair or so they say” - Motley Crue - “Misunderstood”
If you were in your mid 20s and a hard rock fan in 1994, then your world was probably in a lot of turmoil. The entire industry was fully entrenched in what was the biggest musical shift it had seen since The Beatles replaced Elvis atop the charts. The bands that had been selling multiple millions of albums each and every time they released anything only 2 years earlier were now considered old and uncool. There were millions of rock fans out there that bought flannel shirts, Nirvana and Soundgarden albums, and pretended they’d never bought any of the biggest albums from only a few years before. In 1994, if you said you were an LA Guns fan or a Dokken fan, you were an outcast that had been left behind.
At the same time, the very biggest band of that era, Motley Crue was not only dealing with a shift in the musical landscape. They had also replaced their singer Vince Neil. They had just signed what was, at the time, the biggest recording contract in music history and then were going to try to drive forward with a new singer and new sound in this new musical time. It was a seemingly impossible task, but if anyone could do it, it was Motley Crue. Always rebellious, and for years the setter of trends instead of the follower of them, Motley Crue seemed like they could act as the bridge between what was and what used to be.
Armed with new vocalist John Corabi and a sound that, from start to finish, sounded nothing at all like anything they had done previously, their self-titled release was pushed out to the masses in 1994.
Immediately, it was polarizing. Most of the fan base absolutely hated it. They didn’t buy it, and further didn’t support the band to the point where the label themselves made the decision to stop pushing money into it. This was further pushed by an incident with MTV that had the channel boycott the band as well. In one of the most epic falls in history, one of the top 3 biggest bands in the world was pushed to small venues and out of the spotlight.
That said though, many fans felt completely different about MOTLEY CRUE. They loved it. Then and now, they felt it was the best, deepest and most heartfelt album the band had ever and would ever do. One such fan is author Chris Akin. A well know rock critic and the co-host of the often controversial CLASSIC METAL SHOW, Akin was a worshipper of this release in 1994. He still is. Now, for the first time, Chris Akin looks back at 1994 and the release of MOTLEY CRUE. He remembers what so many of the songs meant to him, as well as how they were perceived to the masses at the time.
With CAUSE & EFFECT: MOTLEY CRUE, author Chris Akin remembers both his personal experiences as well as the perception of this polarizing release on the world. It’s one of the biggest flops in music sales history, but is also one of the most brilliant releases...at least in one man’s eyes. CAUSE & EFFECT: MOTLEY CRUE explains why.
"Restless soul deep inside / Searches for some piece of mind / Livin' just to die / I'm an angry man I always have / Had to fight to survive my past / Sign of these times” - Motley Crue - “Misunderstood”