Ugly Kid Joe
Rad Wings of Destiny

Label: Metalville
Three similar bands: Godsmack/Souls at Zero/Another Animal

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. That Ain’t Livin‘
2. Not Like The Other
3. Everything’s Changing
4. Kill The Pain
5. Lola
6. Dead Friends Play
7. Up in the City
8. Drinkin’ And Drivin’
9. Failure
10. Long Road

Whitfield Crane - vocals
Klaus Eichstadt - guitar
Dave Fortman - guitar
Cordell Crockett - bass
Zac Morris - drums
Shannon Larkin - drums

America's Least Wanted (1992)
Menace to Sobriety (1995)
Motel California (1996)
Uglier Than They Used Ta Be (2015)


Recorded at Armoury Studios
Mixed at Armoury Studios
Mastered at Maor Appelbaum Mastering
Produced by Lee Aaron
Recorded by John Webster, Lee Aaron, Sean Kelly, Mike Fraser
Mixed by Mike Fraser
Mastered by Maor Appelbaum
Artwork by Eric Bourdon

Released 2022-10-21
Reviewed 2023-01-


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Time flies apparently, I thought it was just recently I reviewed Ugly Kid Joe, but it was around seven years ago. And the band celebrated 30 years last year, that is also quite a while. Over those years they have released five albums counting this one, the first one in 1992 went multi-platinum and was succeeded by two other albums in the nineties before a long wait for the next album and after that album seven years for this. I think it is good with bands taking time after the first few albums considering that time usually can make up somewhat for the lack of creativity making the albums sound fresher. The cover is cool and funny, quite rad perhaps – and about rad, don’t you also think that Rad Wings of Destiny is a nod to Sad Wings of Destiny?

I read on Wikipedia that it is just that, but I thought so before I read that as we also have some nostalgic references such as Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, Ace of Spades and things like that. A dose of fun in the songs of course, metal, rock, funk, grunge, things like that is in their soundscape. The ten tracks show decent variation, decent vocals, great production, some creativity, and a fresh as well as nostalgic sound. Funny cover song by the way. I think that those who already know the band will recognise this album, it is made to the same format as the previous albums – the good things with releasing fewer albums are that they all feel more exclusive and interesting than for example Iron Maiden who has released five million albums – five or five million albums that sounds similar in a similar timeframe, from which does each album sound most interesting? I know what I think.

Among the albums I have rated with the middle rating this is among the more interesting, it is stylewise interesting and sounds relatively fresh. The problem is that the songs aren’t that exciting, there is nothing that makes a really lasting impression. I think that is the reason why I felt like it was just the other year I reviewed Ugly Kid Joe last as you remember the name and the cover art, but you forget all about the music, things like that makes it harder for your memory to appreciate when it was, with more memorable elements it is easier to also pinpoint the place in time rather than just remembering that you did it. It will most likely appeal to the fans of the band considering that it is not that different from the predecessor, and that shows the advantage of longer time between albums, it feels fresh despite not really offering anything different from before.

In the end I think it could be worth checking out this one, a vinyl copy would look great in the record shelf. But in the economy today it might not be worth buying a record just to look at it. If you already are a fan of the band, you shouldn’t miss this one, if your haven’t heard the band before it would probably be better to check some of their earlier stuff. This album is good but not memorable enough to stand out.