In a recent interview with the brand-new podcast The Liner Note, THE COMPULSIONS frontman and founder Rob Carlyle was once again asked to express his opinion on the latest tracks released by his former collaborators, drummer Frank Ferrer and guitarist Richard Fortus, who are now in Guns N’ Roses. He said: “You know, it’s a slippery slope for me because I basically lost band members to that band, so anything I say is going to be seen through that lens. I was a huge GN’R fan, and they had me all the way through the Use Your Illusion albums, and I even appreciated the covers album. They started to lose me – and listen, I love bringing in industrial elements and things out of left field to the hard rock sound but some of the stuff, I don’t know, it just didn’t land right for me. I feel like it was trying a bit too hard. And dude, just do the fuckin’ bluesy rock ‘n’ roll thing one more time for us. You know what I mean? And it feels like they don’t want to do it. Or Axl Rose doesn’t want to do it. And so, I go back to what I say about all music: the further and further away you get from the original template of rock ‘n’ roll, which is music by poor black people meets music by poor white people – that’s rock ‘n’ roll. And the further and further away you get from it, the less satisfying it feels. At least to me, and I also think to the audience out there, too.”
Elsewhere in the conversation, Carlyle talks about everything from his heroes Keith Richards and Ron Wood (“Nobody influenced me to pick up the guitar until I saw the Stones play live.”) to sharing the bill with a pre-fame Lady Gaga (“Within a year or two, she had her face on every billboard in town.”) to shifting priorities since the pandemic (“I’ve been taking a timeout and have been focusing on my guitar playing… you’re never done learning your instrument.”).
In late 2020, Carlyle and his Compulsions cohorts added to the independent band’s 19-year legacy of near universal acclaim with the release of “Ferocious”, the group’s third full-length. Reviews included, “A Top 5 Album Of 2020” (Sleaze Roxx), “Think Early ’70s Rolling Stones Transported to Present Day” (Fear & Loathing), “What Rock Was Like When It Was Considered Real” (Underground Press) and even “I Prefer Compulsions Versions of Guns N’ Roses, Rolling Stones Songs” (Get Ready to Rock). And when combined with ratings such as a rare “9 Out Of 10” from Vive Le Rock and an even rarer “10 Out Of 10” from Powerplay Magazine, it becomes hard to describe “Ferocious” as anything less than a stone-cold rock ’n’ roll masterpiece.
On “Ferocious”, Carlyle once again enlisted producer Ken Rich and drafted the very best New York-area musicians he could find, including world-famous guitarists, Earl Slick and Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, best known for their work with David Bowie and Guns N’ Roses, respectively; along with ex-RAGING SLAB bassist, Alec Morton; ex-NEW YORK DOLLS drummer, Brian Delaney; New York Blues Hall of Fame guitarist, Hugh Pool; and current GN’R drummer, Ferrer.