MÖTLEY CRÜE singer Vince Neil and bassist Nikki Sixx spoke to The Orange County Register about the group's "Red, White, and Crüe 2005...Better Live Than Dead" tour, which hits L.A.'s The Forum tonight (March 23). Several excerpts from the interview follow:
On how the band is getting along on the road:
Vince Neil: "Things are great. We're getting along better than we ever have. We're having a lot of fun out here."
On the fact that many people seem to be waiting for the tour to unravel:
Vince Neil: "I guess so, but they're gonna be really disappointed. We have been through everything — deaths, lawsuits, jail, anything you can imagine. It's amazing we're still alive. But we're blessed.
"A lot of people have tried to read things into that that aren't really true. The main reason we have separate tour buses is because we can, you know what I mean? Tommy's [Lee, drums] kids are out with us right now. Nikki's got five kids that come to visit. Mick [Mars, guitar] has a special bed. It's mainly for comfort — and, besides, we can afford it."
Nikki Sixx: "Give us time. There's no way this machine's gonna run smoothly. Trust me, something will happen.
"It's like ... I've been watching the Michael Jackson case, OK? And I kept going, `When's this guy gonna pull a bonehead move?' And then today he shows up in his pajamas - there ya go! Same thing with MÖTLEY CRÜE. It's only a matter of time before someone shows up in their pajamas."
"You know, all these rumors about us, it's become a marketing factor. It's what people like to talk about. At times I've felt frustration that it wasn't more about the music, but at the same time I'm probably just as guilty as anybody else in the band for being always on the edge of doing something stupid that keeps us in the public eye, and not for musical reasons."
On Vince Neil's fistfight with Tommy Lee back in 1999:
Vince Neil: "Oh, man, I get asked about that every day. And I explain to people that the band's been together for 25 years. When I was 16, I was sleeping at Tommy's parents' house on the floor next to his bed. When you're friends with somebody like that for 30 years, you're bound to fight. You yell at each other and battle, but you get over it and you can't even remember why you were arguing in the first place."
On the fact that no one else is keeping the spirit of Sunset Strip '80s hair metal alive:
Vince Neil: "We're one of those bands that fills a void. We put excitement back into rock `n' roll again. Bands just forgot about that stuff. Most of the people making it lately look like they just walked out of the audience and put on a guitar. They're not real rock stars, you know?
"I think this tour right now is shutting up a lot of critics. When you walk into Madison Square Garden and it's sold out, who cares what critics say? People are finding it harder and harder to find things to use against us now. Success is the best revenge, I guess."
On the possibility of another MÖTLEY CRÜE studio album:
Nikki Sixx: "Another album is gonna happen, for sure. So in Motleyland, that means maybe."