Review Summary: Is from another dimension, alright.
It's never a good sign when halfway through the first track on an album, you find yourself asking "just how old is this band again?". Yet again, in a way you should be thankful, because it's an indication of the (lack of) quality of the album. Old fans of the band shouldn't be too worried, though, because the band haven't changed- since the eighties, they've been rather hit and miss, and most of their stuff has sounded exactly the same. It's no secured that like most bands their age, they'll do anything to make a quick buck, or furthermore to put their kids through college, and what better way to do that than show how Eco-friendly you are by recycling the same material over and over.
Which is exactly the problem with Music From Another Dimension!
. Instead of adapting to a more modern style, or trying anything revolutionary, Aerosmith have played things too safe and gone with the classic approach. That might not be such a problem for the diehards, or the folks who will do anything to continually fill the Smith's wallets every year, and it also might not be a problem for the band themselves, who seem to be very much aware their glory days have passed, but it's also a sign that they just don't know how to move on. For one, they haven't done any albums containing new material since 2001's Just Push Play
(name a song from that album that isn't the track or "Jaded" without looking it up). And the only thing they've done since then before this is Honkin' on Bobo
. I'm sorry to report that the album title isn't referring to a crack pipe, but it's an album of covers that are so bad, you'd think one of those was being passed around during the recording sessions. So why bother?
Don't be surprised if you find yourself asking that when you are at least four tracks into the 15 on this album. This isn't really an album so much as it is a collection of songs haphazardly thrown into a playlist. There's a total of 6 ballads, which leaves us with 9 other tracks. Most of them are really forgettable, slow and boring. The only one of these ballads that is even remotely memorable is "Legendary Child", which is a nice, melancholy power ballad and interesting lyrics that are sort of a reflection tune, yet even that song is musically in pretty grim shape. Let's not get started on "Can't Stop Loving You", which is both a duet with Carrie Underwood, and an attempt to ape "I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing", which made everyone's tear ducts run dry when it came out in 1998 (the movie it's attached to, on the other hand, Armageddon, made us cry for completely different reasons though). Thing is, so did this song. There's no reason for it to be a duet, there's zero chemistry between Tyler and Underwood, and everything feels forced and unnatural. It's fatiguing to listen to.
"Freedom Fighter" isn't too bad a song and I'm willing to listen. It does have a good message about Joseph Kony but problem is, while the instrumentation is nice and fittingly heavy, the vocals utterly ruin it. "Out Go The Lights" would be a decent tune if not for the cheesy cowbell in the background. The rest of the album... well, simply goes in one ear and out the other. It's far too long, it meanders in and in and it dies nothing to justify Aerosmith's still sticking around, other than to just confirm Aerosmith's status of the world's biggest money grubbing attention whores minus the help of Gene Simmons and co.
Music From Another Dimension!
has no reason to exist, will not attract any newcomers to the band, and old fans will be divided between loving it or just shrugging it off like dust on their shoulders. Audiophiles, in particular, will be ripping their hair out when they hear the ultra-compressed sound on this monstrosity, but that's a different story. A wise fellow once said "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Sadly, those are words Aerosmith apparently haven't considered important. Perhaps if this was released after an actual new album, I'd be a bit more forgiving, but if this is all you can up with in 11 years, clearly it's time for you to hang the gloves up and call it a day.