"Slash's new self-titled solo album features Ozzy Osbourne, Fergie and Avenged Sevenfold." – Album review

The most anticipated album of 2010, for me, was Slash’s new solo album. I have been following Slash on Twitter: (http://twitter.com/Slash) since last summer. With each update that he gave I got more and more excited about this album dropping and today it is finally here. The album, simply called “Slash” features a wide variety of singers from Ozzy Osbourne to Fergie and literally everybody in between. I picked up the album today and let me just say that the album doesn’t disappoint.

It’s hard to know what to expect from Slash. With Guns n Roses the “Use Your Illusion” albums were a lot different than “Appetite for Destruction.” “Appetite” was more blues based rock while “Illusions” had more epic sounding songs. Velvet Revolver is more of a straight ahead rock band, much like Stone Temple Pilots. I wasn’t sure what this album was going to sound like.

So what does the album sound like? Honestly it depends on who’s singing or playing on the song. The first track features Guns alum Izzy Stradlin and Cult front man Ian Astbury. The song is entitled “Ghost” and it kicks off with your typical Slash riff. It’s a riff kind of like “Sweet Child O’ Mine” with Izzy filling in the rhythm parts…much like on “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” “Ghost” is the closest thing to a Guns song on the album, but with Ian Astbury singing, it has its own feel to it.

The second song on the album is called “Crucify the Dead” and Ozzy Osbourne takes the lead vocal role. This was going to be the first single, but Ozzy has a new album coming out and Slash decided that it’s best if he not make this a single, because people would probably assume it’s on the new Ozzy album when it’s not. “Crucify the Dead” sounds like an Ozzy song. You wouldn’t know Slash played on it except for that it’s Slash’s album.

Up third is Fergie with “Beautiful Dangerous.” I think this will be the song where Slash may lose some people (or where Fergie will gain some fans). Personally I love the song. It definitely rocks. The guitar playing is great as it is on all the songs and Fergie nails the song, but some people will never give this song a chance because it’s Fergie; others will be pleasantly surprised. She kind of reminds me of Alanis Morissette if she were more upbeat.

Alter Bridge’s Myles Kennedy gets two songs on the album. He also gets to be the front man on the tour supporting the album. Myles can sing anything. Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones were considering hiring Myles as front man of Led Zeppelin to replace Robert Plant for a tour, but that fell through. Velvet Revolver even approached Myles, but he was too loyal to Alter Bridge (Alter Bridge features everybody from Creed except Scott Stapp… thank God). I love Alter Bridge and I can’t wait to see Myles with Slash live.

The first single on the album is “By the Sword” featuring Andrew Stockdale from Wolfmother (you know the band that sings “Woman,” believe me you’ve heard it a million times, I’d sing it for you, but I’m typing). “By the Sword” is probably the strongest song on the album. I love Wolfmother; they sound like Deep Purple, Led Zepplin, Yes, Jethro Tull and Black Sabbath combined into one band. “By the Sword” is no different. You’d have thought Slash wrote this song for them. It has more of an epic feel to it than the other songs on the album, but again the guitar is just phenomenal. I love the tone he has on this song.

The heavily anticipated metal song on the album, “Nothing to Say” featuring M. Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold is very much that, a metal song. M. Shadows is the perfect guy for the song too. I’ve always looked at Avenged Sevenfold as a combination of Metallica, Guns n Roses and Good Charlotte and because of that I think he’s a good fit for this song. It’s definitely the heaviest song I’ve ever heard from Slash, but it’s not Slayer heavy. It’s a good song and it’s a lot of fun to listen to Slash play heavy metal.

There are so many special guests on the album that I can’t go into all of them. Other guest include Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave), Adam Levine (Maroon 5), Lemmy Kilmister (Motorhead), Kid Rock (Bob Ritchie), Rocca DeLuca, Iggy Pop (The Stooges), Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters), Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters), Steven Adler (Guns n Roses), Duff McKagan and more.

What’s bad? You’re asking the wrong guy. I love Slash and I love this album. I suppose I would say the songs I like least are “Gotten” featuring Adam Levine and “I Hold On” featuring Kid Rock, but I like both of those songs. I realize that I’m biased since I’m a big Slash fan, but this album really is great. There is a something on this album for everybody too.

What’s good? Slash does such a great job of making each song belong to the singer. This isn’t a Guns n Roses or Velvet Revolver album; this is a very eclectic album with wide ranges of talent. There are living legends like Iggy Pop, Ozzy and Lemmy, pop stars like Fergie and Adam Levine and everybody in between. You also get to hear Slash playing with Izzy again on a song, as well as a bunch of musical talent. Dave Grohl and Duff McKagan play drums and bass on the instrumental track “Watch This.” Steven Adler even plays drums on a track. I really enjoy this album and highly recommend picking it up.


Bob Zerull is the Managing Editor of Zoiks! Online. He writes pop culture commentary, does interviews with bands, and reviews music and stand-up concerts. He also administers Zoiks! Online's Facebook page. Follow Bob on twitter at bzerull. Email Bob at bob@zoiksonline.com.
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Alex Correia said...

The album is not bad but it sounds like a compilation of artists instead of a Slash album.

All the songs sound like Slash was a guest guitarist in the artists bands instead of the other way around. Not to mention that all songs are predictable, formulaic and boring. This is another proof that Slash wasn't the brain behind Guns n' Roses, Slash could never have written songs like November Rain or Estranged, sure he wrote amazing solos and very cool riffs, but that's not song writing.

The guitar solos on this album are ok and is where Slash sounds Slash. If I had to compare them with the solos from Chinese Democracy, well, let's just say that the first time I heard "This I Love" solo I cried and "Shackler's revenge" made me go "WOW, how cool and amazing is this solo? On this album, I just felt "Yeah, they're good, pretty standard stuff."

I'm a huge Slash fan and I was expecting something a bit better to be honest. Good effort.

I'll give it 6/10 because some songs are good but stuff like Iggy Pop, Lemmy and Avenged Sevenfold guy actually made me laugh.

Anonymous said...

Well I think the CD is awsome!! I will be listening to it all summer long. I love it. The above poster is obvioulsy bias. Why else would he be praising Chinese Democracy in his review? First of all Slash has been out of Guns for 15 years.. You sound like a fool..

Anonymous said...

Alex, IT IS a compilation of artists,CAPTAIN OBVIOUS!!!
I've been listening to most of these songs for the last 2 weeks on youtube. What a great album!
The blogger nailed it. The song "By The Sword" is tremendous.
It seems the new generation of music fans (ipod & "NOW") are into "singles" compilations and not "albums". People closer to my age remember playing entire albums most of the time. This album should please those youngsters, but at the same time, us "older folk" too. (You know the ones...we saw VH before Hagar,own Blizard Of Ozz on vinyl,and still play AC/DC Back and Black over and over again.)
Slash, like Santana is a guitarist and not a lead vocalist...Captain.
That doesn't mean he can't write great music and perform with great singers !!!
With a lot of garbage out there right now,
(ie,"the Killers" who suck!)
it's refreshing to hear some good solid ROCK MUSIC !

Alex Correia said...

What I meant with sounds like a compilation is the lack of coherency. It sounds like the songs were recorded by the bands the guest artists are a part of with little guest appearances from Slash and I was expecting it to be the other way round.

I meant compilation as a NOW 75 too and this is a solo album not a best of 2009.

I said some songs are good, and they really are, but come on, Kid Rock? Adam Levine? Even Iggy Pop, the songs are terrible.

The first track made me go "This is it! I'm amazed! Then it was downhill. When I got to Chris Cornell I started dying inside. Is he having an asthma attack or something?

Anyway, I'm not a reviewer, it's just my opinion. Might be contradictory, but hey, it's just another album if you like it listen to it if not don't.

I will give it a few more chances then time will tell if it'll become a classic on my vitual shelf or not.

Why am I writing this anyway, lol. Oh I know, bored at work.

bythesword said...

Not the best possible album that slash could offer.
Some good tunes for sure!
But I was disappointed... sadly

Anonymous said...

Well Captain, if you were able to remove the vocals from all these songs you would hear the Slash solo album you are looking for.
There is an instrumental version of Beautiful Dangerous online you might enjoy...check it out you'll be surprised!

Anonymous said...

Slash proves he is more than a one trick pony on this CD.. Good stuff.

Anonymous said...

I like this cd.By the sword and gotten are really brilliant not to mention the opening song.
Great work.

JawKnee said...

all I can say is that Slash still has it. So many lose the edge, or drive, or whatever it is that makes them melt faces. Mr. Sol still has it on tap however. I honestly hate kid rock and avenged seven fold, but even they couldn't ruin it for me.
Thank god it wasn't a chinese for democracy. What a titanic failure that was! Most over produced garbage I've heard since the boy band thankfully faded away.


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