(Album Review) TED NUGENT - Detroit Muscle
Release date: April 29, 2022 (Pavement Entertainment)
Written by: Jeff Tighe
The Motorcity Madman, Ted Nugent, returns with his 17th solo album of original material on Detroit Muscle. What is on tap here generally is hard rock of the variety that Ted has been putting out his whole career. There is a solid mix of song types here, kicking off with the hard rocking title track. Next up is the rocker "Come & Take It " with a chanting chorus of defiance against liberalism ("We will unleash violence for the freedom that we love"). Then there is the speedy, blues oriented "Born in the Motorcity".
What catches the listener's attention is the variety of the material herein, but with 11 songs and clocking in around 33 minutes they are all quick hitters. More patriotic musings are on tap with another fast rocker with "American Campfire", before Ted hits us with a mid-paced blues number that sounds distinctly ZZ Top influenced ("Drivin' Blind"). At 73 years young, Ted's vocals are still strong, as is his guitar work (naturally). Greg Smith handles the bass and Jason Hartless is on drums and both are more than competent at their craft, adding a solid rhythm section to back Ted's vocals and guitar. Next up is yet another fast rocker, "Just Leave Me Alone". The weakest song on the album is "Alaska" an ode to nature and the wild akin to "Fred Bear", but it is still pretty good, so it can't be held as too much of a mark against the album. Then there is the instrumental "Winterspring Summerfall', reminiscent of the classic "Homeward Bound" and the best song on the album.
Rounding out the album are the mid-paced and sentimental "Leave the Lights On", the sheer noise and speed of the heavy metal "Feedback Grindfire", and an instrumental of the "Star Spangled Banner". Detroit Muscle is a strong entry in Uncle Ted's catalogue. Is it as good as his 1970s material? No, but it is still pretty damned good. Ted is on tour this summer in the USA, and all are encouraged to get out and see him one more time.