Disc-Cover Records Insights

Portrait of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, clockwise from upper left, Chad Smith, John Frusciante, Flea, and Anthony Kiedis at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago, Illinois, December 6, 1991. (Photo by Paul Natkin/Getty Images)

 I have never listened to a full album by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I do like a select amount of their hits, including Dani California and Snow (Hey Oh). But this will be my introduction to a full album from them.

This album is critically viewed as a departure from their earlier work, as well as a precursor to the alternative rock explosion and many deem it the best album they have ever made. It was seen to have shown growth and maturity. 

The album begins with “Power of Equality”, which sounds like a mixture of funk and punk-rock. Almost in the vein of Ska. That should tell you exactly how I feel about this song considering any time someone mentions ska, I mention Sublime is one of the worst bands I have heard.

This same rhythm blends right into “If You Have to Ask”. Which almost reaches into disco in places. I don’t think I ever wanted to hear them do that. I am starting to think random selection might have been a bad idea.

“Breaking the Girl” is a little better, but I don’t think the melody fits that lead singer very well. It occurred to me how distinctive his voice really is.

“Funky Monks” is not exactly my type of music, but of the songs so far it is the most well done. He isn’t lost in the music or sounding off. It came together well.

and “Suck My Kiss” makes me remember I did not like this album very well…The lyricism just comes off tacky at this point.

“I Could Have Lied” is more in the vein of the Chili Peppers sound that I like. Mellower, leaning more into the vein of rock than the funk. 

And then the disappointment of switching back with “Mellowship in Slinky B Major” which what IS that song title exactly? They’re trying too hard at this point with the titles. 

I am only on song eight? This album is too long. Given, “The Righteous and the Wicked” is a little better than other tracks on the album. It stands out a lot more.

I have heard “Give It Away” previously, it seems to be one of their bigger radio hits. I don’t like the song very well at all. It says a lot of nothing. 

“Blood Sugar Sex Magik” has an interesting musical progression that brings me in, but the chosen lyricism is just unappealing and his vocal stylings are somewhat annoying here.

I think “Under the Bridge” might be the most well known Chili Peppers song there is. I always associate this song with them. The song isn’t bad, but it never grabbed me as much as others.

And apparently we are now…”Naked in the Rain”. Some of the musical progressions they have are very cool. I don’t know if the lead singer executes the same quality. 

“Apache Rose Peacock” makes me think the writers for this band really just write whatever words might mix with the melody. The lyricism is downright ridiculous at times. 

I am officially convinced by “The Greeting Song” that no one who listens to the Chili Peppers religiously actually cares about lyrics. Their lyrics are like that person that talks just to hear themselves. 

“My Lovely Man” is a mild breath, it is not as dreadfully annoying as the last few tracks. This album is definitely way too long for the kind of music they are doing.

Nevermind, we got “Sir Psycho Sexy” and this might be the worst one I have heard yet.

“They’re Red Hot” closes the album on a note as ridiculous as the way it began.

Lyricism: 2/10 – I don’t think they were even trying here.

Music: 6/10 – I found the music itself to draw me in far more than the lyrics and the vocals. I think it is the only redeeming arc of this album.

Overall: 3/10 – If you want to hear some instrumentation that helped build the 90s alternative movement, this album is fantastic. If you wanted something deep, meaningful, and saying something, I’d look elsewhere. – Michaela

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