Released: 2010, Frontiers Records
It's been fifteen long years since Vince Neil released his second solo album, CARVED IN STONE. That album wasn't nearly as well-received as his initial outing, EXPOSED (a highly underrated album in my humble opinion) and with Motley Crue's reinvention as a lucrative retro touring outfit, Vince hasn't had the time to focus on his solo career like he used to. But now, with TATTOOS & TEQUILA, Vince is back at it with a mix of covers and original songs.
The bulk of the album is made up of '70s era rock standards that Vince grew up on. To his credit, the songs he chose are well-suited to both his rock 'n roller persona, and his vocal style - so much so that you could believe that they were originals. From Cheap Trick's "He's a Whore" to the revved up version of Elvis Presley's "Viva Las Vegas", Neil is in his element as scruffy rock dog. His voice sounds none the worse for wear, even if he doesn't exactly try to strain himself. A special mention goes to the excellent cover of CCR classic "Who Will Stop the Rain?"; a beautiful song done right with a reverent take.
Of the two new songs, the title track is more enjoyable; it's a rough-scrabble rocker that is instantly memorable. "Another Bad Day" was originally intended for the last 'Crue album, but doesn't make much of an impact. Throughout, ex-Slaughter guys Dana Strum and Jeff Blando easily handle the material and also fulfill the "Where are they now?" quotient of the album. I’ve never heard of drummer Zoltan Chaney, but he pounds away ably enough.
TATTOOS & TEQUILA is an enjoyable, if somewhat forgettable effort from Neil. It's easily up to par with some of the better covers albums out there but it's hardly essential listening. '70s rock fans or hardcore Vince Neil fans will certainly enjoy though. After all, there are certainly worse ways for Vince Neil to settle comfortably into middle-aged rocker semi-retirement.