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  Left of Self-Centered
Artist: Butch Walker
Label: Arista

Apparently Marvelous 3’s hit “Freak of the Week” was the aberration.  After that alterna rock success, former Southgang hard rocker Butch Walker offered M3’s Readysexgo, fully revealing his suburban hair-metal tutelage (and proud of it, mind you).  Now solo, he’s intent on rebuilding the archetype of pop-rock icon. It’s hard to tell whether he’d rather be Vince Neil or Rick Springfield.  Probably both. Walker’s weakness, even on his best material, is the subpar lyric (see the otherwise gorgeous “Every Monday” from M3’s Hey! Album).  He’s unafraid to use phrases like “rockin’ like Dokken ‘til the party ends” on “Get Down” and “into the ring I flew, like a
wrestler falls on cue” during “Far Away From Close.”  One gathers that Walker’s uninterested in connecting with literature majors, so you might as well appreciate him for his considerable strengths:  a prodigious gift for pop melody and top instrumental skills.  Good dumb fun.  (

Jeff Elbel 12/21/2002


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