Better Than: Jock Jams: Volume 5.
It has been said that a jack-of-all-trades is a master of none. However, while someone like Dave Grohl feeds his children by disproving the aforementioned statement, Kid Rock has managed to spin a career out of what boils down to on-stage vivisections of the term.
Last night, the latter, also known as Mr. Robert James "Bob" Ritchie, lured a legion of fans to line the floor and walls of the Hard Rock Live Hollywood auditorium for the first of his two night Hollywood occupancy. It was, as Rock put it, a warm up for whatever illicit activities people had planned for New Year's Eve. But that did not stop the Michigan native and his "Twisted Brown Trucker Band" from throwing down a hearty slab of pseudo-country, rap-rock, uh, metal-ish stuff.
- Photos: Kid Rock at Seminole Hard Rock Live
For the sake of objectivity, we're going to get the positives out of the way first: Rock's performance was high energy -- he was seemingly everywhere at once, and to call the performance anything less than professional would be a serious oversight. The band (which featured several members that have been with Rock since the early days) was comprised of only top caliber players. There was some really great guitar playing, and if you don't enjoy watching drummer Stefanie Eulinberg slam away at her drums, you might have had a stroke or be dead.
However, when one digs beyond the bombast of an 11-piece band of (honestly) talented players and the well-oiled energy of the show, there is, really, very little to hold onto within a Kid Rock performance.
In clear defiance of the near
20 million records 27 million records he has sold and the multiple Grammy nods he boasts, Kid Rock's songs simply are not very good. This includes the more refined country-rock numbers that have replaced the abandoned yelling over Metallica riffs that made the rap-rocker famous in the late '90s.
The curious thing is that, despite it being fairly common knowledge that Kid Rock totally sucks, there was a full audience -- with a minimum ticket price in the range of $60. The crowd had no specific vibe, there were families, your standard-issue casino types, a few younger faces, but in general, no one demographic was specifically represented. Also (thankfully) missing was any of Rock's recent political rhetoric, which would have certainly made for a far more interesting article, but in its absence, made for a far more enjoyable evening.