Remember "Mother's Milk," the legendary Red Hot Chili Peppers album that might not have been
It's easy to forget that today, but in the late '80s Red Hot Chili Peppers were not as influential a funk-rock band as you and I used to think of them. What's more: their story could have been completely different, because in 1989 the band's career almost went off the rails... It was turning pointBut the young rockers managed to turn adversity into an advantage and make a giant step forward!
Today we are going to talk about "Mother's Milk."The album proved to the world, to fans and to the members of the RHCP in the first place: any tragedy can be overcomeand even more - to restore yourself and your sound with an innovative approach!
Tragedies as prerequisites
"Mother's Milk" became deserved breakthrough Red Hot Chili Peppers. The record demonstrated an innovative approach and truly explosive sound, skillfully realized in 13 tracks. By the way: RHCP had been drawing their funk influences for years, when they were students and worked with the king of funk George Clinton on their second studio record "Freaky Styley". But what really influenced them tremendously during the recording of "Mother's Milk" (that's how the title translates) was... tragedies.
Rather, though, there was only one serious tragedy: and that was the death of Hillel Slovakia - the guitarist, founder and creative leader of the band. He passed away after taking too many substances. He was only 26 years old. It's not hard to guess that after what happened, the RHCP members were faced with complete ignorance about their future. The departure of the drummer added its own colors Jack Irons.
Something had to be done immediately, or the story of the Chili Peppers would end before it had even begun. The first thing Kiedis did was to get rid of his own addictions. After that. The lineup has reformed: the band was joined by the percussionist Chad Smith and a phenomenal teenage guitarist John Frusciante.
The renewed lineup gave the opportunity to "climb into uncharted territory." - to experiment, to try something new... The band, like the producer Michael Bainhorn, made the most of the situation, even if there was tension between them. And it couldn't have happened without that, given the presence of the very young Frusante in the studio! From Kidis' memories:
"John and Michael were literally fighting over the sound! Bainhorn demanded a powerful, crunchy, almost metallic guitar tone from Frusante, whereas before we always had interesting acid-rock-style guitar tones, and lots of sleek, sexy, funky guitar tones. The problem was also that John was drowning out the sound of other instruments and even my vocals with his playing!"
Nevertheless, the sessions were safely completed. Despite the clash of personalities, both fans and the musicians were pleased with the end result.
A little bit about the tracks
By releasing "Mother's Milk, the band showed that they had regained their energy - perhaps even more unrestrained than before! With this record it also became clear that from now on RHCP cares a little bit deeper than just romantic relationships and having a good time. In a word - the record demonstrated Growing up The band, its interest in experimentation, and the skills of the new, very young guitarist John Frusante. This was the first glimpse of the Red Hot Chili Peppers' great future.
"Good Time Boys."
"Subway to Venus"
"Nobody Weird Like Me"
"Knock Me Down"
"Taste the Pain."
"Stone Cold Bush."
"Pretty Little Ditty."
"Punk Rock Classic."
"Sexy Mexican Maid"
"Johnny, Kick a Hole in the Sky"
Album track list diversewhich allows everyone to find something here for themselves. Opening "Good Time Boys." proved that the band can deftly blend different genres into one rhythmic hybrid. Funky "Nobody Weird Like Me" is a return to the band's more eccentric and youthful style of their early years. There's also room for more punk songs, including "Magic Johnson."as well as covers - «Fire» or "High Ground". The latter composition serves as an interpretation of the Stevie Wonder classic that launched a team of young and grief-weary rockers into another stratosphere.
The commercial breakthrough didn't hit RHCP until after the release of their next work, "Blood Sugar Sex Magik". But "Mother's Milk" still carries weight: its fusion of funk, hip-hop, and hard rock clearly paved the way for the band's later achievements, which eventually achieved status the legendary. And the addition of Frusante and Smith proved to be the last ingredient these brilliant guys needed.