After two decades in the music business, the Red Hot Chili Peppers released theireighth album, “By the Way” last summer. It had been three years sincetheir last album, the successful “Californication.”
Many criticshave dismissed “By the Way” as whiny and moody, and if you are lookingfor traditional Red Hot Chili Peppers, this CD may not satisfy you. Some songsare whiny and moody, but overall they have great beats and lyrics. The maindifference between this and their other albums is that you can tell the ChiliPeppers are older. They have seen a lot and gotten wiser. Their lyrics are nolonger about drugs and sex; instead, they focus more on the world’sproblems.
The song “This is the Place” deals with the problemsof teen pregnancy and STDs. In “By The Way” Anthony Kiedis sings someof the most interesting and soulful lyrics:
“Standing in line/To seethe show tonight/And there’s a light on/Heavy glow/By the way I tried to say/I’dbe there … waiting for/Dani the girl/Is singing songs to me/Beneath the marquee… of her soul/By the way I tried to say/I know you”
John Fruscianteplays some excellent guitar chords, Chad Smith displays his amazing style ofdrums, and Michael Balzary shows off who he is – one of the best bassists in rocktoday.
Many of the songs are soothing, including “Tear,””Warm Tape” and “The Zephyr Song.”
This is a greatalbum to listen to as a whole. If you are already a fan, you should get this CD.If you are not familiar with the band, start with one of their earlier albumssuch as “The Uplift Mofo Party Plan” first.