40 years ago yesterday Nikki Sixx enlisted drummer Tommy Lee for a new band, and thus was born the greatest glam metal band of all time.
Mötley Crüe came up in the first wave of glam metal, central figures in the Sunset Strip scene in the early eighties and, somehow, they actually managed to imbue the nascent genre, infamous for its machismo, with even more over the top swagger.
I say ‘somehow’, but anyone familiar with the Crüe knows exactly how. For all the drug and sex fuelled wild partying that the genre was about, Mötley Crüe absolutely lived it. The outlandish tales of debauchery and excess that other bands on the scene tried to portray were 100% reality for Mötley Crüe, and this is what made them infamous.
What is important, however, is the Crüe had the talent to back up this reputation. Mick Mars’ had an innate ability to write incredibly catchy riffs that help put the ‘metal’ in glam metal.
Finally, it has to be said, over the course of four decades, Mötley Crüe have crafted one of the best live shows in metal and rock. Pyro, dancing girls, an upside down drummer are all common elements in a live show from the Crüe. And, of course, these two hour visual and auditory circuses close perfectly with a powerful perfect of the classic ballad, Home Sweet Home.
While it’s no secret that they are getting on in years, and no longer perform at their peak, I am selfishly thankful they have reunited. I know the performance will still be incredible, and I can’t wait to see it again.
The history of Mötley Crüe should be seen almost as a mythological epic tale to younger glam bands. They didn’t just tell tales of the scene – they lived it, and (barely) survived to tell the tales. So give it up for the Saints of Los Angeles.