(Los Angeles) July 17, 2007 – Executives from MTV along with sister company Pocket Books (a division of Simon & Schuster) held a press conference in a new venue, Crash Mansion, in downtown Los Angeles to give the media and a few lucky fans a preview of Nikki Sixx’s book & soundtrack CD, The Heroin Diaries. The presentation was hosted by Billboard Magazine editor Tamara Conniff, and featured the Mötley Crüe bassist along with several project partners. In introducing Sixx, Conniff called the book “the most addictive Rock & Roll take since The Dirt.” Sixx then revealed to a packed room of reporters and camera crews that the book was based on the actual diaries he kept during the height of his crippling heroin addiction in the late ’80’s along with commentary by a host of people including his Crüe band-mates, Vanity (his girlfriend at the time), Slash and a host of former associates. “I felt the book wasn’t complete without other people’s perspective and opinions on what I was like as an addict,” said Sixx. “They would tell me if I was full of sh*t.” Simon & Schuster Deputy Publisher Anthony Ziccardi, in describing what drew him to the book, called the Heroin Diaries “the most brutally honest and revealing account of drug abuse ever written.” Ziccardi also referenced the unique graphical design of the book by artist and photographer Paul Brown.
Media and guests were also treated to a preview of the accompanying Heroin Diaries soundtrack that Sixx had kept hidden from everyone for months, only revealing it to his management company and label upon delivery of the final book manuscript. To create the soundtrack, Sixx worked with multi-talented musicians/producers DJ Ashba and James Michael, dubbed Sixx: A.M., who drew inspiration from chapters in the book. “We weren’t writing for radio,” said Sixx. However, radio seems to disagree, according to Clear Channel Director of Rock Programming Jim Richards, who heavily praised the lead single, “Life Is Beautiful” which is already top 40 on the rock radio charts despite only officially being serviced for playlists this week. Richard’s referred to the album as a complete body of work and drew comparisons with albums such as “Tommy” (The Who) and “The Wall” (Pink Floyd).
MTV Senior Executive Peter Baron announced that the literary work would be branded as an MTV/VH1 book and supported with a full range of “on channel, off channel and on-line” programming, including heavy support of the music video for “Life Is Beautiful,” which he showed to the media. In introducing the clip, which was also directed by Paul Brown, Baron described the video as “visually bringing the book to life,” by combining band performance with edgy animation of the book artwork.
Sixx also announced that 25% of all book royalties would go to benefit “Running Wild In The Night,” a charity that he began in association with Covenant House, Los Angeles. George Lozano, Executive Director of Covenant House LA, which helps rescue homeless and runaway youth from the street, called Nikki an “inspiration” and “role model” for the kids helped by his organization. To underscore the point, Lozano introduced Irwin Gonzalez, an 18-year old rescued by Covenant House, who said that because of people like Nikki who help provide an alternative to the lifestyle of the street through music, he had been given “the gift of hope.” Sixx, a former runaway himself, said he was drawn to the organization because “music gave me the opportunity to get off the streets and gave me something to live for.
Following the press conference, downtown Los Angeles experienced a 115-decibel tumbler when Sixx: A.M made their world premiere with a live set featuring 5 songs in front of the press and contest winners from radio & MySpace. The thundering sound was accompanied by synchronous visual projections of animation and artwork from the book.
Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star, The Soundtrack was written and produced by Sixx, James Michael and DJ Ashba under the moniker Sixx: A.M., as the dark, sonic companion to the book. The Heroin Diaries soundtrack will be in stores on August 21 via Eleven Seven Music with the book following on September 18 from MTV/VH1
Pocket Books, a division of Simon & Schuster.
Photo caption #1 L-R: MTV Senior Executive Peter Baron, Billboard Magazine editor Tamara Conniff, Nikki Sixx, Clear Channel Director of Rock Programming Jim Richards, George Lozano, Executive Director of Covenant House LA, Simon & Schuster Deputy Publisher Anthony Ziccardi.
Photo caption #2 L-R: Nikki Sixx, James Michael and DJ Ashba.
Photo caption #3: Nikki Sixx
Photo caption #4 L-R: Nikki Sixx and Erwin Gonzalez, Covenant House LA resident.
For more information on Nikki Sixx, Heroin Diaries, Sixx: A.M. and Running Wild In The Night please visit http://www.nikkisixx.net.
Nikki Sixx was born Frank Feranna in San Jose, California, in 1958 and grew up in Seattle with his grandmother. At the age of seventeen, he sold his guitars and took a bus to Los Angeles, where he began hanging out in local clubs and playing in bands. He founded Mötley Crüe in 1981 with friend and drummer, Tommy Lee. As the cofounder, songwriter and bassist of one of Rock’s most notorious bad boy bands, Mötley Crüe, Sixx has achieved international success having sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, documented the band’s quintessentially decadent lifestyle in the best-selling 2001 autobiography and soon-to-be feature film, The Dirt, and had one of the top-grossing tours of 2005, with all four original members reuniting to play before an estimated one million people in the U.S. Sixx is an avid photographer, clothing designer with his Royal Underground line, author and primarily a songwriter who has written songs with Meat Loaf, Marion Raven, Drowning Pool, The Exies and Saliva.
I am not exactly sure what it is about Soulidium that I like so much. I can’t say they are breaking new ground musically. The music on Children of Chaos, is quite comparable to a lot of the metal music that is on rock radio stations today. Usually, I am not too fond of the modern approach to metal, but I am able to accept it in limited doses.
The band does have a little bit of a shock rock element going on, and I do have an affection for the whole horror element. The first time I saw a picture of singer, Michael McNight, I had to jump back for a second. Maybe its the whole vampire image, but nonetheless, it works for me. It is something different, even though the band’s sound isn’t exactly new. The band has also released a couple of videos using that creepy horror element to their advantage!
Soulidium has a sound that reminds me of a cross between Filter, Tool and Breaking Benjamin. There are a few songs on this disc, that I have grown to like pretty well including, Trapped, The Light, Live Forever and Drama. All of these songs are radio ready. In fact, I have heard The Light on Squizz on XMRadio.
My only problem with this disc is this, some of the songs are so bass centric, they tend to run together and lose their own individual identity. A lot of newer bands are guilty of this, and Soulidium is no exception.
Nonetheless, I think Soulidium will gain a moderate level of success with this release. I am glad I checked this one out.
Rating:Out of 10
1. Soulidification Sequence
3. The Light
4. Live Forever
6. About You
7. Cash Kind Of Girl
10. Jaded Messiah
11. The Big Time
12. Slowly We Die