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Nine Lives by Aerosmith
Released: Mar 1997
Label: Columbia
The Aerosmith on 1997's Nine Lives sounds conflicted. In addition to almost breaking up while in the studio, the group couldn't decide whether they wanted to snarl like they did in the '70s or continue pumping out MTV pop for teens. The opening title track, maybe the hardest jam they recorded all decade, certainly argues the former; so does "Something's Gotta Give," which bleeds Rocks-like desperation. But the group also unload "Hole In My Soul" and "Kiss Your Past Good-Bye," gooey power ballads in the vein of "Angel" and "Cryin'" and "What It Takes" and "Crazy" and... oh, you get the point.
Justin Farrar