Red Hot Chili Peppers Unlimited Love Album First Review

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Red Hot Chili Peppers’ new album Unlimited Love is soon set for release, and fourfeathers on the SteveHoffman.TV forums has written the first review:

Got to listen to this album the other day and my first impression is MAN IS IT AMAZING TO HAVE FRUSCIANTE BACK IN THE FOLD!!!

Definitely not their strongest batch of songs, but you can almost hear how much fun they’re having in the studio. They sound loose and like they’re having a blast. Lots of post-song chatter left in that brought a smile to my face.

The album is at its best when the band gives John the reins, like “The Heavy Wing”, BY FAR my favorite track on the album. Hearing a classic, soaring Frusciante chorus again is almost indescribable — this song has gotta be the one that brought tears to Rubin’s eyes. John’s unreal licks and perfect feedback control channel Hendrix, and are only outdone by his insanely passionate vocals.

It’s a shame this track practically closes the album because by the time this song rolls around, you can hear they’ve found their footing in this new era as a band. While the first half of the album has a lot of loose funk jams (like “Poster Child” and “Aquatic Mouth Dance”, which are SICK, don’t get me wrong, but don’t really say much) “The Heavy Wing” captures that emotional, rockin’ songwriting spark found on Californication, By The Way and Stadium Arcadium.

I hope Unlimited Love is merely the first step in the band getting reacquainted because songs like “The Heavy Wing” proves they’ve still got a lot left in the tank.

Other notes I made:

– “Here Ever After”: Chad brings some insane energy and a real cool groove to this one. The band really hits the gas right outta the gate here, great pace! AWESOME double-tracked John solo action on the outro.
– “Whatchu Thinking” has some incredible cascading John leads in the chorus. He’s such a damn creative guitarist. HUGE John outro solo, band lets him rip for a solid minute. More Hendrix-inspired whammy and feedback-fueled goodness. Everything that makes John such a monster creative force is encapsulated in this song. His parts are genius. Top 3 track on the album.
– “Bastards of Light” is kinda all over the place, but some real cool John slide licks in the chorus.
– “White Braids and Pillow Chair” has an awesome verse melody. Very catchy.
– “The Great Apes” has a ridiculous chorus, even by RHCP standards, but there’s a huge instrumental break in the middle of the song and the interplay between Flea and Frusciante is INSANE and totally saves the song. One of the most badass band moments on the album.
– “Let Em Cry” is another big winner, with a sublime, chilled out groove, nice sparse production and a REALLY catchy hook. Vibey organ, super pleasant horns and another sick John solo. Just a great summer tune, you can almost feel the sunshine when you listen to this one.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that if this album was a few tracks lighter it might be approaching classic status.