Rock On

Biting guitar, insistent drums, and some creative new ideas make this one to watch.

One of the greatest rock bands on the planet, Aerosmith never ceases to surprise. Right from the time the world awoke to those hard-to-forget riffs in "Janie's Got A Gun", through the craziness and media blitz that has accompanied the group's on- and off-screen antics, Steven Tyler and the gang have consistently produced rock albums without compromising on the things they're good at. With its emphasis on biting guitar and insistent drums, together with some creative new ideas, "Just Push Play" is one of the group's better efforts.

An example of this is "Jaded", a rock/pop combination which is flying up the charts, and "Fly Away From Here", a ballad in true Aerosmith style. The title track is fairly good as well, although I preferred the hooks and riffs in "Drop Dead Gorgeous", while the crazy lyrics in "Under My Skin" showcase attitude in abundance ("u break the rule, u got e-rot-tickle cool"). Less impressive is the badly-named "Avant Garden" and the insipid "Trip Hoppin'" - although even these are listenable and will probably grow on you, given time.

Perhaps the best way to describe this album would be to quote some of the lyrics from the title track - when Steven Tyler screeches, "instead of growin' old / all dapper and neat / i'm gonna grow my hair / right down to my feet", it's clear that these boys - and their music - are going to be around a while.

This article was first published on 18 Apr 2001.