In the ten years since Aerosmith had their last U.S. Top 40 hit with “Jaded,” the band’s mustered little more than an album of blues covers and several compilations, a few unsafe tours and an heap of backstage in-fighting between outlandish singer Steven Tyler and the rest of the band. Not content to settle things with Joe Perry and company, Tyler’s spent the past year developing a strangely lucrative side career, infusing the American Idol judges’ table with loopy energy and penning a dishy, heartfelt memoir. Now, of course, comes the moment we’ve all been dreading: the inevitable solo single.
Tyler’s “(It) Feels So Good” isn’t particularly bad – even if it’s only half as catchy as anything Aerosmith’s released in the past 25 years – but it’s wholly unnecessary. It feels like it was scooped from a pile of unused Aerosmith demos (given the co-writing credit from Marti Frederiksen, who’s been working with Boston’s bad boys since the mid-’90s, it likely was), and the faceless backing track screams “session guys.” The 63-year-old Tyler is still worthy of his “Demon of Screamin'” moniker, sounding as surprisingly crisp as he has for decades. But we expect our frontmen to throw us a curve when they fly solo, whether it’s playing jazz or writing a hit called “Sussudio.” And the less said of the surprise appearance by Nicole Scherzinger – whose dazed, pouty mugging as Tyler plays pattycake with her backside rivals the entire Pussycat Dolls discography as embarrassment goes – the better.