After landing one of the biggest recording contracts of the decade, Aerosmith will return to its original label - Sony/Columbia - next year.
So, to fulfull its standing contract with Geffen, the band has compiled and released "Big Ones."The album is packed with 13 certified hits from the '80s and '90s and two new releases that all reflect the swanky sass the Aerosmith grabbed and held to.
Putting its full trust in a new song, the band kicks off the album with "Walk on Water," a groovy, head-bouncing ditty filled with the standard Aeroesque sound. Throughout the album, guitarist Joe Perry slides his hand across the fretboard and pulls out spiralling fills, bluesy leads and Cajun-flavored rhythms.
Beginning with the third cut, "Love in an Elevator," the hits begin to roll.
"Dude (Looks Like a Lady)," "Rag Doll" and the sentimental ballad "Angel," all taken from 1987's "Permanent Vacation," can be found scattered among the "Pump" hits, "The Other Side," "What It Takes" and the haunting "Janie's Got a Gun."
Aerosmith also decided to pull the hyperactive wail of "Eat the Rich"; the psychedelic tinge of "Livin' on the Edge"; the painful ballad "Amazing"; and the '50s talk-ballad revival "Cryin'," from the band's most recent platinum release, "Get a Grip."
Another new song featuring the band's trademark swagger is "Blind Man." Tyler builds on the tune's gospel base and gives it a shot of rocking adrenalin.
"The Beavis and Butthead Experience" compilation single "Deuces Are Wild" also makes an appearance. The Southern flank of the song finds its place firmly wedged between the slow-rocking "Amazing" and the hard horns of "The Other Side," giving the album a taste of the psychedelic Southwest.
While many fans will applaud "Big Ones" for showcasing the band's most recognizable hits produced over its 10-year career with Geffen, some diehards may find the career isn't fully represented. It's a shame the band's dislike for "Done with Mirrors," its 1985 Geffen debut, left "Let the Music Do the Talkin' " and "My Fist Your Face" off the record and in the can.
AEROSMITH: "Big Ones," including Walk on Water, Love in an Elevator, Rag Doll, What It Takes, Dude (Looks Like a Lady), Janie's Got a Gun, Cryin', Amazing, Blind Man, Deuces Are Wild, The Other Side, Crazy, Eat the Rich, Angel, Livin' on the Edge.