Generation Swine

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Generation Swine
Studio album by Mötley Crüe
Released June 24, 1997
Recorded 1995-1997
Studio Can-Am Recorders, Tarzana,
Music Grinder Studios and Conway Studios, Hollywood,
The Enterprise, Burbank,
The Chop Shop and Butt Cheese West Studio, Los Angeles, California
Genre Heavy metal, alternative metal
Length 64:06
Label Elektra
Producer Scott Humphrey, Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee
Mötley Crüe chronology
Quaternary
(1994)
Generation Swine
(1997)
Greatest Hits
(1998)
Singles from Generation Swine
  1. "Afraid"
    Released: 1997
  2. "Beauty"
    Released: 1997

Generation Swine is the seventh studio album by the heavy metal band Mötley Crüe, released on June 24, 1997. The album marks the return of lead singer Vince Neil following his last appearance on 1989's Dr. Feelgood and the last album to include drummer Tommy Lee until his return for their 2008 album Saints of Los Angeles.

Background[edit]

Following the commercial failure of the Mötley Crüe album and tour, the band was under pressure by executives at Elektra Records to return Mötley Crüe to the level of commercial success that the band enjoyed in the 1980s.

The band, then officially consisting of vocalist/guitarist John Corabi, bassist Nikki Sixx, drummer Tommy Lee and guitarist Mick Mars, were so frustrated with the failure of the previous album and tour sales that they fired numerous people around the group, including their accountant, manager Doug Thaler, and their producer Bob Rock. The band then hired Allen Kovac as their new manager and started looking for another producer to work with for their next record which was originally titled Personality #9.[1][2]

After the mass firing, the band was called to a meeting with Warner Bros. CEO Doug Morris to discuss the current state of the band. At the meeting, Morris tried to convince Sixx and Lee to get rid of Corabi, as he wasn't a "star," and reunite with original singer Vince Neil. Sixx and Lee were not interested in the idea of working with Neil again, and insisted on keeping Corabi in the group. With some additional convincing from Elektra CEO Sylvia Rhone, Morris agreed and the band continued with their work.[1]

Recording[edit]

Mötley Crüe had returned to the studio with the intention of recording a straight rock record that was to be more aggressive than the Mötley Crüe album was,[3] and with Rock producing they had recorded material such as "The Year I Lived In a Day" and "La Dolce Vita." The band was so excited about the new music, that according to Corabi; "At the end of each day we'd walk around the studio carrying our huge cocks in our hands because the music rocked so hard."[1]

After Rock was fired for being "too expensive and overproduc[ing] the music",[1] the band eventually chose Scott Humphrey to take Rock's place, with both Sixx and Lee agreeing to serve as co-producers on the album. After Humphrey, Sixx and Lee took over as producers, the recording process became very disorganized, as Humphrey and Sixx regularly argued over ideas for the album. Mars' role in the band was greatly reduced due to an ongoing feud between him and Humphrey, and Corabi grew increasingly frustrated with the sessions as well, as he would learn and write material only to find it completely changed by the time he returned to the studio.

As the recording of the album continued, the band was still being pressured to reunite with Neil, and Corabi decided that he had had enough of the frustration of working under the pressure that the band and Humphrey were putting on him. With Corabi out of the band, the door was now open for Neil to return.

Neil, meanwhile, had been busy with his own solo career and the untimely death of his daughter Skylar, when Kovac had approached him with the same idea of reuniting with Mötley Crüe as Morris had presented to Sixx and Lee earlier. Neil, like Sixx and Lee, was against the idea of working with the band again, but Kovac had planted the idea of a reunion in Neil's head that eventually changed his mind. After meeting with Sixx and Lee, Neil agreed to rejoin the band and finish the album whose title had now been changed to Generation Swine.[1]

Musically, the album shows Mötley Crüe trying to update their image and sound, experimenting with current trends such as electronica and alternative rock. The songs draw heavy influence from Cheap Trick in the first half of the record. Rick Nielsen and Robin Zander did backing vocals in some songs. Most of the album was written while Corabi was with the band,[4] and as such Neil (whose voice is higher and cleaner than Corabi's) had difficulty adjusting his voice to the new material and sound.

Even with Neil back in the band, the album proved to be a departure from traditional Mötley Crüe albums. Besides the aforementioned experimentation with various types of music, the album featured Sixx and Lee on lead vocals for the first time. Sixx was featured on lead on the song "Rocketship", which was written as a love song to his new romance with model Donna D'Errico, and sang lead on parts of "Find Myself". Lee was featured on lead vocals on the song "Brandon", which was a namesake song to his first-born son, and his then-current wife, model Pamela Anderson, as well as the track "Beauty".

Lyrically, Generation Swine ranges from songs about drugs and prostitution such as "Find Myself" and "Beauty," to the anti-suicide stance on "Flush" and familial love on "Rocketship" and "Brandon."

Release and promotion[edit]

"Afraid" was released as the first single from the album. The video featured Hustler publisher Larry Flynt, who also put the band on the cover of an issue of Hustler that year. "Afraid" reached #10 on the US mainstream rock charts, but that too did little to generate interest in the album. The second single released was "Beauty" which reached number 37 on the mainstream rock charts. The band felt that the album's sluggish sales were due to Elektra not promoting the album properly, claiming that the label was only interested in promoting R & B acts. Rhone denied this claim though, stating that Mötley Crüe was a major priority for Elektra and that the label had spent a large sum of money in order to get the band to perform "Shout at the Devil '97" on the American Music Awards in January 1997.[1]

To promote the album, Skeleteens Beverages in Pasadena, California created a soft drink for the band called, "Motley Brue." The drink came in bottles which featured the new, "Pig logo" and consisted of large amounts of blue #1 which turned everything blue. The intentions were to have people that drank the soft drink urinate green fluid. Mötley Crüe helped design the bottles that featured lyrics from Generation Swine songs on the reverse of each label.

Generation Swine debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200,[5] selling over 80,500 copies in its first week and was certified Gold by the RIAA on August 27, 1997.[6] Despite the strong charting debut, the album failed to return the band to the level of critical and commercial success that had been hoped for with the reunion, and according to Nielsen SoundScan the album has sold about 306,000 copies in the U.S. to date.[7] In 2008, singer Vince Neil stated that the album was "terrible" due to "too much experimenting".[8]

Generation Swine would be the group's final release on Elektra Records, as the label and Mötley Crüe would break their relationship off in early 1998.[9] Future releases from the group would come from their own Mötley Records.[9]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 2/5 stars[10]
Chicago Tribune 2.5/4 stars[11]
Entertainment Weekly (B)[12]
Metal Forces (6/10)[13]
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars[14]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 2.5/5 stars[15]
Sputnikmusic 4/5 stars[16]

Generation Swine received mixed reviews.

The staff review of Sputnikmusic highlights the experimental nature of the production which "is devoted to hard rock tracks structurally very similar to their so-called 'classic era' but sonically re-wired and approached from a direction entirely alien to the band" and praises "the vast improvement, or at the very least development, in Nikki Sixx's songwriting", finally declaring Generation Swine "a worthwhile experiment for the band that produced some of their most enduring music."[16] David Grad of Entertainment Weekly praises Vince Neil's voice, which lost "none of its hormonal urgency" and describes the music as a fine display "of highly burnished metal trumpeting the pleasures of drugs and nasty sex."[12]

On the other hand, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic defines the album "nothing short of an embarrassment" and blames the band for "simply recycling old ideas and sounds", not coming up "with any catchy riffs" and making the return of Vince Neil "just a coincidence."[10] Dean Golemis of the Chicago Tribune agrees with Erlewine's opinion, writing that despite some "nose-bleeding punk runs", what transpires from the album is the sound of a "Hollywood metal band from the '80s."[11] Jon Wiederhorn of Rolling Stone remarks how the band tried the fusion of "cornball glam-metal techniques" with "cutting-edge production and grinding industrial effects", but instead of a "new direction that would defy expectations" they produced an album "more schizophrenic than Wesley Willis", unwelcome to Mötley Crüe fans who "crave consistency".[14] J. D. Considine, another Rolling Stone reviewer, finds the album "as limp as overcooked spaghetti."[15] Neil Arnold of Metal Forces calls Generation Swine "the black sheep of the Crüe family, making even the 1994 self-titled opus look brilliant" and ascribes the failure of the album to experimenting the fusion of "industrial-fueled grooves and clanking rhythms" with the "distinctive Vince Neil whine", concluding that "'electronica' and 'alternative' are not words [he]’d associate with Mötley Crüe."[13]

Lawsuit[edit]

On July 7, 1997, Corabi filed a $4-million lawsuit against the band for alleged breach of contract, fraud, and slander. Corabi's claim was that he had not received royalties or credit for his work and contributions while he was in the band.[17][18]

Corabi was only officially credited for two songs on the original pressing of Generation Swine, "Flush" and "Let Us Prey," but claimed that he was responsible for at least 80% of the material on the album.[18]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Nikki Sixx, except where noted. 

No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "Find Myself"     Nikki Sixx, Mick Mars, Tommy Lee 2:51
2. "Afraid"       4:07
3. "Flush"     Sixx, Lee, John Corabi 5:03
4. "Generation Swine"     Sixx, Lee 4:39
5. "Confessions"   Lee Lee, Mars 4:21
6. "Beauty"   Sixx, Scott Humphrey Sixx, Lee 3:47
7. "Glitter"   Sixx, Bryan Adams Sixx, Humphrey, Adams 5:00
8. "Anybody Out There?"     Lee, Sixx 1:50
9. "Let Us Prey"   Sixx, Corabi   4:22
10. "Rocketship"       2:05
11. "A Rat Like Me"       4:13
12. "Shout at the Devil '97"       3:43
13. "Brandon"   Lee Lee 3:25
Japanese bonus track
No. Title Length
14. "Song to Slit Your Wrist By"   3:33
2003 remaster bonus tracks
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
14. "Afraid" (Swine/Jimbo Mix)     3:58
15. "Wreck Me" (previously unreleased) Lee, Neil, Mars, Sixx Lee, Neil, Mars, Sixx 4:19
16. "Kiss the Sky" (previously unreleased) Lee, Neil, Mars, Sixx, Corabi Lee, Neil, Mars, Sixx, Corabi 4:47
17. "Rocketship" (early demo)     1:37
18. "Confessions" (demo, Lee on vocals) Lee Lee, Mars 3:35
19. "Afraid" (video)      
  • The back cover of the CD was printed upside down. This was the band's intention.
  • Nikki's son Gunner can be heard on "Find Myself."
  • Robin Zander and Rick Nielson of Cheap Trick play on "Glitter."

Personnel[edit]

Recording and producing[edit]

  • Produced by Scott Humphrey
  • Co-produced by Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee
  • Recorded by Lenny DeRose, Brian Dobbs, Dave Ogilvie, Steve MacMillan, Marty Ogden
  • Assistants: Barry Moore, Mike Geiser, Patrick Thrasher, Patrick Shevelin, David Bryant, Brandon Harris, Bill Kinsley, Gary Winger, John Nelson, Dave Hancock
  • Head Programmer: Paul DeCarli
  • Mastered by Tom Baker at Future Disk
  • Photography: John Eder, William Hames, John Harrell, Dean Groover
  • Creative and Art Direction: Duke Woolsoncroft, Duke Design Co.

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Country Organization Year Sales
USA RIAA 1997 Gold (+ 500,000)[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Lee, Tommy; Mars, Mick; Sixx, Nikki; Neil, Vince (2002). Strauss, Neil, ed. The Dirt: Confessions of the World's Most Notorious Rock Band. New York City: ReganBooks. ISBN 978-0060989156. 
  2. ^ "Crue to Be Kind". Rolling Stone. November 22, 1996. Archived from the original on November 9, 2006. Retrieved November 26, 2014. 
  3. ^ Scott, Linda. 1995. INTERVIEW: Nikki Sixx, Motley Crue
  4. ^ Crücial Crüe Remaster liner notes
  5. ^ a b c "Generation Swine Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 29, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Gold and Platinum Database Search - Generation Swine". Retrieved November 20, 2009. 
  7. ^ Peters, Mitchell. April 15, 2008. "Motley Crue Roars Back With New Album, Tour" billboard.com. April 17, 2008.
  8. ^ Soeder, John (August 15, 2008). "Motley Crue gets back to rock 'n' roll basics for new album, tour". Cleveland.com. The Plain Dealer. Retrieved November 29, 2014. 
  9. ^ a b Layne, Anni. "Motley Crue Breaks From Elektra". Rolling Stone. April 17, 1998.
  10. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Mötley Crüe - Generation Swine review". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  11. ^ a b Golemis, Dean (June 27, 1997). "Motley Crue - Generation Swine (Elektra)". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Grad, David (June 27, 1997). "Motley Crue - Generation Swine". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  13. ^ a b Arnold, Neil. "Mötley Crüe - Generation Swine". Metal Forces. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Wiederhorn, Jon (June 26, 1997). "Generation Swine - Motley Crue". Rolling Stone. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  15. ^ a b Considine, J. D. (2004). "Mötley Crüe". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian. The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. New York City: Simon & Schuster. pp. 562–63. ISBN 978-0743201698. Archived from the original on December 27, 2010. Retrieved December 4, 2014. 
  16. ^ a b DeSylvia, Dave (May 21, 2006). "Motley Crue - Generation Swine". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Corabi Files Lawsuit Against Motley Crue, Elektra Records". Rolling Stone. July 9, 1997. Archived from the original on October 13, 2007. Retrieved November 26, 2014. 
  18. ^ a b Parker, Lyndsay (October 7, 1997). "And Justice For All...Heavy Metal Lawsuits". News. Yahoo! Music. Archived from the original on December 14, 2006. Retrieved November 26, 2014. 
  19. ^ モトリー・クルーのランキング (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved September 8, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Mötley Crüe – Generation Swine (album)". Swedishcharts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved November 29, 2014. 
  21. ^ "Mötley Crüe – Generation Swine (album)". Australian - Charts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved November 29, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Chart Log UK: M - My Vitriol". Zobbel. 
  23. ^ a b "Generation Swine Billboard Singles". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 29, 2014. 
  24. ^ "Artist Chart History: Motley Crue". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 18, 2014.