(pb; 2001: non-fiction)
Mötley Crűe – made up of bassist Nikki Sixx, drummer Tommy Lee, guitarist Mick Mars, and vocalist Vince Neil – were one of the raunchiest high-profile heavy metal bands in the 1980s, pursuing sex, drugs and other dehumanizing debaucheries without restraint for the better part of fifteen years. This book spans twenty-one years, from 1980 (when the band formed) to 2001, the band’s story told by the band members (and those who worked with them) in author-alternated chapters.
It should go without saying that this is not for anyone who’s easily offended. The Dirt is sordid, raw, cruel (especially when it comes to the band members’ past deeds), and often shockingly funny; throughout it all, however, one fact shines through – all the band members, f*cked-up and impenitent as they were/are, have a deep, genuine love for making music, which rarely wavered, drug addictions and drama aside.
A necessary, not-off-putting tone of psychoanalysis creeps into the book near the middle of it, as the band members, who come off as distinctive personalities, talk about why they were such sh*ts to everyone around them – the one exception would seem to be Mick Mars, who, while not an innocent, was less indulgent than Sixx, Lee or Neil.
This is not pretty reading. But it is painfully honest and brave, and oftentimes, funnier than a tortoise wearing a tortoise-sized black leather prom dress: highly-recommended for anyone who’s a metal fan, or anybody with a dark seedy sense of humor.
Also worth checking out: The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star, by Nikki Sixx and Ian Gittins.