It has been 19 years in the making and Ugly Kid Joe has sadly missed the mark with this very average 4th studio album.
Formed in 1987 in Isla Vista California, Ugly Kid Joe have been plying their trade for a long time. Even releasing multi platinum album America’s Least Wanted which took the world by storm back in 1992, they then followed it up with another 2 average albums before disbanding in 1997. During this time various
members continued their music careers and having some success. It wasn’t until late 2009 that the rumours of a reunion arose and wouldn’t be confirmed until mid 2010. The band released an EP in mid 2012 and toured extensively to promote it before going back to create Uglier Than They Used Ta Be.
I’ve found this album is nothing more than a rehash of their early 90’s sound and brings almost nothing new to the table. 'Let the Record Play' highlights this perfectly, catchy enough to hook you and incite some head nodding it is one of the better tracks of the record but still brought nothing new to the fold. 'Mirror of the Man' is the diamond in the rough here as it brings a bit more to the plate with its simple acoustic guitar work, easy on the ear lyrics, minimalistic drumming and only a hint of electric guitar, by far the stand out track on this album.
Finally they have covered the rock classic 'Ace of Spades'. Now as a Motörhead fan I played this track with trepidation, and again it brings nothing new, if anything they have cleaned the noise of the guitars and that’s about it. Everything else is just a carbon copy of the original, if it wasn’t for singer Whitfield Crane’s voice you would almost think it was the original Motörhead classic.
When I first heard about this reunion and new album I got a little excited, I loved America’s Least Wanted but I didn’t want the same album, I wanted something new. Something the band had picked up with the side projects for the last 13 years and incorporate it into their sound.
Sadly it never happened and this is what I got. I’m not going to lie, I really don’t like this album, it was a massive let down for me and I hope the band regroup after touring and release a bit more grown up album.