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UGLY KID JOE Uglier Than They Used Ta Be

By Larry Petro, News Monkey
Sunday, December 13, 2015 @ 9:43 AM


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Review By Halo

UGLY KID JOE
Uglier Than They Used Ta Be

Metalville/UKJ records




After almost 20 years UGLY KID JOE has released their first full length album.

Uglier Than They Used Ta Be was recorded in Louisiana under the direction of UKJ guitarist / Producer Dave Fortman (SLIPKNOT, GODSMACK, EVANESCENCE). Current band members consist of the undeniable vocals of Whitfield Crane, guitarist Dave Fortman, guitarist Klaus Eichstadt, Cordell Crockett on bass and guitarist Sony Mayo. Last but not least, on drums, Shannon Larkin and Zac Morris. The guys managed to come together to make a great album with a mature sound but in keeping with their influences of the past. The California-based band formed in 1990. In 1992 their single "I Hate Everything About You" peaked at #3 on Billboard's Top 100 Singles and spent 20 weeks on the charts. The song later was used in the pop culture movie Wayne's Worlds. Ugly As They Wanna Be was the highest selling debut EP of all time, selling an astounding 2 million copies. The next single released, "Cat's In The Cradle", spent 20 weeks as well on Billboard's Top 100 Singles chart, peaking at #6.

UKJ began touring with the Likes of OZZY OSBOURNE, MOTORHEAD and DEF LEPPARD. They also toured in support of VAN HALEN and BON JOVI on a European tour. The band was on a hot streak and gained respect from many musicians and fans. After their sophomore album release Motel California, their "Late Check-Out Tour" would be the band's last. This album had what was considered poor record sales. The band disbanded in 1997 sadly after 7 years. Many UKJ fans were crushed. The band sold a total of 5 million albums, which was a very successful end. They maintained a following and in 2011 the band reunited and released the EP Stairway To Hell. In support of this EP they toured with the great ALICE COOPER, THE CULT, FAITH NO MORE and GUNS 'N' ROSES and continued playing shows from 2012 to 2014.

Uglier Than They Used Ta Be is an album that has rock, funk and Southern rock mixed with a heavier metal sound at times. The first track, "Hell Ain't Hard To Find", has a FOO FIGHTERS sound to it which I loved. The tracks on this album have a maturity about them. The band has gone through many issues as we all have and it's reflective in this album. Track #5, "She's Already Gone", deals with a relationship ending, a very personal song that's one of my favorites and starts off with an awesome guitar solo. Track #4, "Mirror The Man", has a 70s rock sound mixed with southern rock. Track #2, "Let The Record Play" has the lyrics 'Time heals all the wounds they say and I'm done with the same ol song and dance', which was probably my favorite song lyrically. This album has two cover tracks are MOTORHEAD's "Ace Of Spades", featuring Phil Campbell, who contributes to two other tracks on the album as well. The second cover is RARE EARTH's version of "Papa Was A Rolling Stone", featuring Australian vocalist Dallas Frasca.

This album had great influences and phenomenal contributors. UKJ has had incredible contributors in the past as well, including Rob Halford of JUDAS PRIEST and Lemmy Kilmister of MOTORHEAD. With past and recent collaborations on albums, this album has great potential to help with UGLY KID JOE's comeback. They obviously have support from die hard UKJ fans and many fellow musicians.

Watch for upcoming tour dates. Looking forward to seeing these guy together after this long hiatus. These Cali guys can still rock.

4.5 Out Of 5.0

Grab a copy of Uglier Than They Used Ta Be in the KNAC.COM More Store right HERE.


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