on 5 May 2004
I bought this album shortly after discovering Blood Sugar Sex Magik and falling in love with the album and the band. I set about getting all of their earlier albums, and this is the first one i purchased.
Mothers Milk is the first album to feature a completely different line up. Although Kiedis and Flea remain from the original Peppers, their guitarist Hillel Slovak tragically died from a heroin overdose shortly after their previous album, and their drummer Jack Irons went into a depression and left, due to the death of Slovak. So after deciding whether or not to carry on with the band, Kiedis and Flea thankfully kept it going. They enlisted a young guitarist who was a massive fan of the band, John Frusciante. His energy and enthuiasm won him the role, and he could already play all of their songs anyway. On drums, they found Chad Smith, who, although seeming to be out of place with his heavy rock image, fitted in perfectly. They set about writing Mothers Milk together, unaware that this would be the band line-up that would make them world famous.
So to the album itself. Their previous album 'Uplift Mofo Party Plan' signalled a slightly rockier edge, and they continued with this direction when making Mothers Milk. The album contains Flea's trademark funky slap bass throughout, and Kiedis's rap style vocals, but it brings in new energy from Frusciante and Smith. My album summary is as follows.
'Good time boys' - Starts the album off quite rockily, as it means to go on. Sounds like the CD is jumping in the middle of it, but its not! Some great guitar riffs.
'Higher Ground' - A cover of the Stevie Wonder classic, and better than the original! This one has featured on loads of compilations over the years. Flea's bass is brilliant.
'Subway to venus' - Bizarre vocals about space being king or something. A fairly average song though.
'Magic Johnson' - A tribute song to the legendary US basketball player who the Chili's love. Quite quirky, but funky as hell when it kicks in.
'Nobody weird like me' - How Flea's fingers don't fall off while playing this track i'll never know, the slap bass is on overdrive. Really fast paced rock song.
'Knock me down' - Mid tempo tune, an extended version of this appears on the re-released, remastered version of the album, but doesn't work quite as well. Good song, not dazzling, but good.
'Taste the pain' - Great little song, good guitar riffs, vocals, and a good video to go with it, buy 'What hits' on DVD if you can!
'Stone cold bush' - One of the album highlights, really rocky song, fast paced, great wah wah guitar, sounds of a woman having an orgasm in the background, what more could you want!
'Fire' - A cover of the Jimi Hendrix song, but about twice the speed. Brilliant version, and dare i say it again, better than the original?!
'Pretty little ditty' - Beautiful little instrumental track, part of which was covered by Crazy town years later on their hit 'Butterfly'.
'Punk rock classic' - Short snappy punk track, very rocky, ending in the guitar riff from GnR's sweet child of mine, bizarrely.
'Sexy mexican maid' - Brilliant smooth song, great groove, sexy lyrics.
'Johnny,kick a hole in the sky' - Great end to the album, got everything, funk,rock, great drumming, weird vocals (i mean what does kick a hole in the sky mean anyway)
There is a remastered version of this album available which has extended versions of Sexy Mexican maid and Knock me down, also has 2 brilliant instrumental tracks one of which is probably the funkiest thing they've ever done. It also has 2 live covers of Hendrix songs. Well worth buying.
All in all. this album is my 2nd favourite Chili's album after Blood Sugar. It basically paved the way for what was to come, and they re-invented themselves with this album. It is way different to the sound of Chili peppers circa 2004, in my view it is a much better sound, but any Chili's fan old and new will like the majority of this album. Go and buy it, you know you want to!