Red Hot Chili Peppers
Stadium Arcadium



by TheUnibomber USER (4 Reviews)
May 23rd, 2007 | 15 replies

Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

May 9th 2006 – The Red Hot Chili Peppers release their latest album, Stadium Arcadium, a 2 CD epic that takes every era of the Chilis and blends it into one giant melting pot of musical harmony. Quite possibly the most diverse album ever released by the band, Stadium Arcadium represents everything the Red Hot Chili Peppers have accomplished in their illustrious career, from their punk-funk roots to their current mellower pop-rock sound and everything in between.
The album is divided into two discs, Mars and Jupiter. Although they are not meant to be separate identities, for the purposes of this review, I’ll take them in parts and then combine them at the end.
Disc 1: Jupiter
The first two songs on Jupiter are reminiscent of the Chili’s last two releases Californication and By the Way. Dani California is the third installment of the “Dani” trilogy (parts 1 and 2 being Californication and Dani California). A classic Chili Pepper song, Dani California leaves the listener’s mouth watering and wanting more. And of course, RHCP doesn’t fail to deliver. The jingling guitar intro to Snow (Hey Oh) and Flea’s pounding bass line set my heart a flutter and Snow instantaneously became my favorite song on both discs.
Although the first two songs of Jupiter create a very “Californication” atmosphere, Charlie completely shatters this impression. The octaved guitar and bass rhythm in the beginning of the song coupled with Kiedis’ “get up and jump” vocals (“tick tick tick tick tick tick tick tick, wot wot wot wot wot wot woah”) remind me of a classic Red Hot Chili Pepper funky jam that will be amazing live. I can just picture Kiedis jumping up and down while singing the tick/wot part of it.
The rest of Jupiter is as amazing as the first three songs. It maintains a perfect balance between the funkier sounds of the older Chili Pepper albums and the mellow laid back tones of the last few Chili Peppers. “Hump De Bump” reminded me of a Freaky Styley song with its trumpets and George Clinton/Parliament funk vibe. Kiedis must have been listening to a lot of James Brown and Sly & The Family Stone because his vocals have taken a much more soul and R&B filled tone.
Despite funk oozing from every pore of Jupiter, fans of Californication and By the Way and the less funky Chili Pepper songs will not be disappointed. Slow Cheetah is reminiscent of Road Trippin, with its acoustic, solemn guitar rhythm. Wet Sand is the Stadium Arcadium version of I Could Die for You, with John’s guitar and Kiedis providing a guitar-vocal duet backed by Flea’s soothing bassline. The line “my what a good day for a walk outside” sends shivers down my spine and makes Wet Sand one of my favorite tracks on the album.
Stadium Arcadium also reveals that old dogs CAN learn new tricks. John, Flea and Chad sound like they are the same person on every song because the guitar, bass, and drums blend so well together. John and Flea definitely put aside the problems they had together while recording By the Way and created a symbiotic Technicolor masterpiece of sound on Stadium Arcadium. John also revealed some tricks of his own, making a lot of use of overlapping guitar sounds, and even mixing in some synthesizer sounds. The time Flea and John spent working with The Mars Volta also didn’t hurt, as John’s guitar pushes itself to the forefront with blaring solos that sound much like they were written by Omar Rodriguez Lopez of Volta (who makes a guest appearance on Especially in Michigan).
Disc 2: Mars
Mars, much like Jupiter, provides a perfect balance between old and new. The opening track, Desecration Smile, features some interesting vocals by Anthony Kiedis. A shockingly high pitched Kiedis shows up for the verses, with John’s usual high-pitched squeal adding back up vocals. Surprisingly, this doesn’t sound too bad. Tell Me Baby is my favorite track off Mars. From the soft intro the song takes a turn for the funkiest as Flea starts slapping his bass, and Kiedis begins rapping.
One of the most interesting tracks on this album is Hard to Concentrate. Dedicated to Flea and his newlywed wife, this song is the ultimate wedding-on-a-Hawaiian-beach-while-the-sun-sets song.
Other standout tracks on Mars include Readymade, If, Made You Feel Better and Death of a Martian. Readymade features some of the heaviest guitar tones on any Red Hot Chili Pepper track ever. John’s distorted funky guitar riff coupled with Flea’s harmonic bassline and classic Kiedis funk vocals reminds me of a punk as *** band who can actually play their instruments. Kiedis sure as hell unleashed a lot of serenades on this album, and If is the crown jewel of them all. I don’t think there is one girl out there in the world who’s heart doesn’t melt every time she hears this song. Made You Feel Better does just what its name implies: makes you feel better. Kiedis funky verses and poppy chorus coupled summarize the whole theme of this album: a sonic timeline of the Chili’s career. Death of the Martian closes out the album, and much like Venice Queen, is a eulogy. Written for the death of Flea’s dog and companion Martian (and quite possibly Kiedis’ dog Buster who died while making this song), Death of a Martian’s haunting guitar and vocals make it sound out of this world. Kiedis goes off on a quixotic tangent at the end of the song delivering a whimsical sermon about what, I really can’t say.
Although Stadium Arcadium isn’t the Chili Peppers best work, it is definitely nothing short of a masterpiece. It has some lapses in consistency, and Kiedis’ vocals sound slightly different and aged than in the past, which was bothersome at first. John and Flea play in perfect unison on this album and create some of the best Chili Pepper music I have ever heard in my life. The bass and guitar are as good, if not better, than Blood Sugar Sex Magik, which in my opinion is the Chili Peppers’ best album both musically and vocally. Stadium Arcadium does a good job of enveloping the Chili Peppers amazing career in 28 songs, from the horns on Hollywood to the pipes and pans on Breaking the Girl to the soothing ocean-breeze guitar on I Could Die For You. No Red Hot Chili Peppers fan should be disappointed with this album, and all new fans should definitely pick up this one to get a taste of everything the Chili Peppers are.

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Comments:Add a Comment 
May 23rd 2007


Holy wall of text. Put this into paragraphs and I'll read it.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 2.0

hump de bump is the worst song ever

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 2.5

I'm gonna have to agree with Mr. Channing.

I used to like this, but I just find it really boring, now.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

i didn't love this at first, but it grew on me.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 2.0

A few decent songs on this album with a bunch of unnecessary crap inbetween.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 1.5

^^no theyre all crap. these guys used to make great songs but now i cant even bare to listen to any song on this album. their new single is such crap its literally drives me crazy. good review though, you did an excellent job describing the feel of the album even though i disagree with it

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Good review.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Great review, the album is underated by a lot people.

May 23rd 2007


Album Rating: 4.0


May 24th 2007


Album Rating: 3.5

ah Stadium Arcadium... the album that never ends. but it's all good, cause i've spend much time to discover some great tunes on this one last summer. all songs are more or less great but some songs that seem to stand out the most besides the excellent singles, are 'Slow Cheetah', 'Hey', 'Readymade' and 'Turn It Again'.

May 24th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Turn It Again is one of the best RHCP songs to date.

May 24th 2007


I grew tired of RHCP years ago. Their music has became more and more boring as the years go by. But a good review either way.

May 24th 2007


Album Rating: 2.5

[quote=Custis]hump de bump is the worst song ever[/quote]

There's worse on this album. Like 'Torture Me'.

[quote=the Dropper]



May 24th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

I'll read it when it's made into paragraphs. (what those other guys said)

I still like this album a lot, although most of the singles aren't too great, and it doesn't get its groove going until Torture Me.

Readymade, Wet Sand, Torture Me, Storm In A Teacup, Turn It Again, Tell Me Baby, 21st Century, and She Looks To Me are all fantastic songs.

Something about this album that slightly bothers me though is that the songs don't really feel connected, they just seem like a bunch of songs they liked and decided to throw onto the album in some random order.

May 24th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Great album, and IMO, one of the best releases of 2006. The Chilis really broke through with this album. This is my favorite post 91 Frusicante release.

As for the review, seperate into paragraphs, give a bit more detail and you should be fine.

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