By Callum Doig
Four guys, nine albums, countless tattoos, sex, drugs, rehab, babes, rock ‘n’ roll.
All of those sums up exactly what the notorious Mötley Crüe have been through in 34 controversial years as one of metal’s greatest quartets ever. The band has been to hell and back, yet they and their music has been staying alive all thanks to their fans. Starting from making next to nothing, the boys would later become one of the biggest acts to hit the arenas with countless sold out shows worldwide, selling over 100 million copies of their albums worldwide. After 34 years, Mötley Crüe will be turning off the amplifiers and will remain on permanent hiatus. But, before they do, they still have a number of shows to finish off, including our very own country Australia with shock rocker Alice Cooper before they leave the world of rock n roll.
Going all the way back to the year 1981, the year the Crüe got together and put out their first record ‘Too Fast For Love’, the band found their name after another band they performed with called White Horse, called the group a ‘motley looking crew’. Originally having the name printed as ‘Mottley Cru’, the band later found use of umlauts thanks to Motörhead, titling their band as ‘Mötley Crüe’. From there on, the band went to the studio and recorded their debut ‘Too Fast For Love’, costing them around $3,000 to record in a couple of days. With the band getting into the scene of rock ‘n’ roll, performing numerous local club shows, the band discovered a whole bunch of fashion, music and art that they were searching for in Los Angeles, giving them the glam look that would later influence more groups in the 80’s to do the same. Mötley Crüe also became the first ever band to create rock residency in Las Vegas. Something that their peers Def Leppard and Guns N’ Roses would later do as well.
With sophomore ‘Shout At The Devil’ being released 2 years later, the band lift off with bigger opportunities. Throughout their time in the 80’s, the band’s lyrics showcased their love for motorcycles, babes, alcohol and drugs. In 1987, the same year the ‘Girls, Girls, Girls’ record was released, Nikki Sixx suffered a heroin overdose, which resulted in him being pronounced dead for two minutes, and later being miraculously revived, hence the idea for ‘Dr Feelgood’ track and fan favourite ‘Kickstart My Heart’.
Going on their course as metal bigshots, the band toured with many major acts such as AC/DC, Metallica, Queensrÿche, Van Halen and so many more throughout their time. Mötley Crüe made their first Australian appearance in the middle of 1990 in support of ‘Dr. Feelgood’.
When grunge was kicking into the scene, Mötley Crüe and a vast number of acts within their genre faced many problems with shows and making new material. When frontman Vince Neil left the band in 1992, the band hired John Corabi as their replacement for Neil. Unfortunately, even with Vince Neil in the group during the 90’s the band’s later albums didn’t receive as good reception as earlier albums. This would later affect their live shows, playing mainly from their first four records that made them the band they are today.
In later years, Mötley Crüe went on for more touring, selling out a number of arenas and venues across the world, adding a handful of extra features to their live shows including pyrotechnics attached to Nikki Sixx’s bass guitar, and a ridiculously massive rollercoaster for Tommy Lee’s drum-kit to ride on during his drum solos.
While Lee and Sixx have been involved in their own projects past and present, it’s unknown what Vince and Mick will be getting up to in their time while the band remains history. Nikki Sixx intends to keep on going with solo work in Sixx A.M., while Tommy Lee, who knows? Maybe he’ll do another solo album.
Mötley Crüe’s most recent visit to Australia was with KISS in 2013, which will also be returning for a tour across the country in October this year. With this being the final chance to ever see Mötley Crüe in Australia, this is sure to be a massive send-off for the band. Though this is their last ever tour in Australia, they have a handful of other shows to get through overseas, as well as performing on New Years Eve for 2015 at the same place they started; in Los Angeles. Whether you’re a long-time fan, or new to the Crüe, the music of rock n roll’s most notorious group ever will stay in your life forever.
Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne – Tuesday May 12
Allphones Arena, Sydney – Saturday May 16
Brisbane Entertainment Centre – Tuesday May 19
Adelaide Entertainment Centre – Thursday May 21
Perth Arena – Saturday May 23