MÖTLEY CRÜE's VINCE NEIL: Only Bands Whose Careers Were On Way Out Said Grunge Killed Rock

September 4, 2014

MÖTLEY CRÜE singer Vince Neil claims that his band "supported" the rise of grunge in the early '90s and says that Seattle music scene "didn't seem to kill" MÖTLEY CRÜE the way it affected many of the other so-called "hair-metal" bands who were mega successful in the '80s.

"We went on [MTV's] 'Headbanger's Ball' and we'd had an early pressing of [NIRVANA's] 'Nevermind'," Neil told Q magazine. "We were talking about a bunch of upcoming bands and told people to check that album out."

He continued: "We supported that whole thing.

"I don't know why people say grunge killed rock. Only people whose careers were on the way out said that. It didn't seem to kill us.

"I was talking to Courtney Love [wife of late NIRVANA frontman Kurt Cobain] one time and she told me that one of Kurt's favourite records was [MÖTLEY CRÜE's 1981 album] 'Too Fast For Love'."

Rob Zombie recently told England's TeamRock Radio that the American rock scene never recovered from the the '90s grunge explosion. Zombie explained, "When the grunge rock thing hit, with NIRVANA and all that, everybody thought it was cool to be anti-rock star. But in a way they sort of anti-rock starred themselves right out the door, because the rap guys came in and they said, 'Fuck it. We'll be the rock stars then, if you guys are going to wear flannel shirts and stare at your feet.' And in the U.S., truthfully, rock music has never recovered from that."

Zombie added, "A whole generation of kids thought, 'Fuck this! Rock music is boring. Let's go listen to rap music.' And it's never recovered."

In a recent interview with Myglobalmind webzine, GREAT WHITE guitarist Mark Kendall spoke about how his band's career was affected by the rise of grunge in the early '90s.

"Really, the grunge movement, even though it affected Eighties rock, I wasn't really as bummed out as I thought I should have been," he said. "I was almost relieved to hear something different, because I really felt that at the end of the Eighties, it was starting to get watered down. It was becoming so predictable. Everybody was writing the same songs with the anthems, and to me, it was just really bad.

"You know, what happens is a handful of bands go big and they're doing something that has substance and it's pretty cool stuff, but then every major label wants their version of that. So when that starts happening over and over again, it starts to lose its vitality. And I was almost happy. I just thought it's nice to hear this raw music; it was such a welcome change for me. ALICE IN CHAINS, for example, I liked. Usually I'm pretty accepting when I hear music that has melody to it and that has some kind of originality. Their songs were maybe a little darker, about how screwed up the world was and doom and gloom, whereas in our era it was all about celebration and girls… Our attitude was to get away from the problem, theirs was to embrace it. And it still sounded good, and there were a lot of good bands that came out in the Nineties. But it was a dark period for bands of our era because the momentum had shifted towards the newer bands."

"I was talking with Rudolf Schenker of the SCORPIONS and he said that they basically didn't play in the Nineties, they had a ten-year break almost, because of all the new music. We still played but we were kind of flying under the radar, because so much attention, so much deserved attention was happening with the new bands.

"In the Eighties, when we would tour there would just be the two bands, or there might be another opening act, and we'd fill arenas every night. In the Nineties, they had to put like seven bands together on a bill, and all of them had sold millions of records."

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