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Shane’s Rock Challenge: RED HOT CHILLI PEPPERS – 1989 – Mother’s Milk

| 13 May 2014 | Reply

Shane’s Rock Challenge: RED HOT CHILLI PEPPERS – 1989 – Mother’s Milk
7.5/10

Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Mother's Milk cover

Red Hot Chilli Peppers were in a state in 1989 – 3 albums in, and mourning the OD death of guitarist Hillel Slovak, EMI weren’t exactly radiant about their sales so far. With their four album deal coming to an end, this was make-or-break time.

Producer Michael Beinhorn clashed repeatedly with both new guitarist John Frusciante and singer Anthony Keidis about melody versus groove, buffoonery versus commercialism. The producer mostly won out, and a new direction was forged that would take the band towards chart success, propelled along by new drummer Chad Smith’s hard rocking rhythm.

Singles Knock Me Down (Keidis was off the junk for a while at this time, and an anti-drug song was very appropriate) and their high-powered cover of Stevie Wonder’s Higher Ground, both became hits, and there’s a heap of other fun stuff on Mother’s Milk – Good Time Boys and Subway To Venus prove they didn’t leave the madcap socks-on-cocks funk completely behind, and Stone Cold Bush, Hendrix’s Fire, Punk Rock Classic and the psych-out Johnny, Kick A Hole In The Sky all signposted the next progression of the band.

As a completely irrelevant aside, I did laugh out loud when I went to Wikipedia’s page for this album, to find the disclaimer “This article is about the studio album by Red Hot Chili Peppers. For human milk, see Human breast milk.

By Shane Pinnegar

Shane

Category: Shane's Rock Challenge

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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