Man, if only I could find the words to describe what it was like to be me in 1989...seventeen years old, living in a little hick town, and finding this album. What a liberating blast of funk-punk-sex-rap-rock in a world where Bocephus ruled.
"Good Time Boys" kicked the door open and showed off new guitarist John Frusciante, a rock song in the truest sense (note the sample of "Bonin' in the Boneyard" by Fishbone and "White Girl" by X). The catchy, uptempo remake of "Higher Ground" slowly grew into a rock radio hit for the Peppers. The funky "Subway to Venus" is a refreshing little slap on the face that almost dares you to sit still while listening (favorite line: "...if I can't make ya dance, I guess I'll just have to make ya piss ya pants..."). "Magic Johnson" is a funky, drum n' bass-driven ode to their favorite player of their beloved LA Lakers (although you have to wonder if the song might have been different if he had come out about his HIV beforehand). "Nobody Weird Like Me" is the Peppers doing what they did best...showing off the explosive, hyper-energy freakshow that they were in the late 80s: "the freakiest show I know is the show of my own...livin' my life in and out the twilight zone..."
The only hint of the cynicism that began surfacing on BloodSugarSexMagik comes in "Punk Rock Classic," when Anthony Keidis snipes at the music industry: "...just put us in a category, yes it's a must..." and the song ends with John Frusciante playing a dying few seconds of the opening to "Sweet Child o' Mine."
BloodSugarSexMagik was an amazing follow up to this, but the differences between the two albums almost make you think it's two different bands. The whole album is a hyper, energizing experience, and is probably my favorite early RHCP album.
For the folks who think "Under the Bridge" was how they got their start, pick up Mother's Milk and edify yourself.