Dave has always liked to tinker around with styles and sounds (even though he has gone to his bread-n-butter on this tour). Jazzy tunes have been featured on Crazy from the Heat and virtually all of the other solo discs. Skyscraper featured a lot of Steve Vai "alien" sounds. "Your Filthy Little Mouth" has a country tune, a bit of reggae and a little urban dance somethin'.

The clips off of the BBQ dvd that I have seen are in this vein of experiementation, but he misses the mark. The beauty of the VH tunes is the VH sound -- the total package from Dave's vocals to Ed's guitars to Mikey's backgound vocals to Al's trademark cymbals-ladden beat. A "Chemical Bros." style remake is not what we need. Nor do we need an acoustic version of Mean Street that is not lifted from a VH reunion "unplugged" (I can dream).

One guy who has figured out how hard rockers can avoid the "nostalgia" pitfall is (believe it or not) Tommy Lee. I have been listening to his new disc non-stop (except for the XM Radio Sam & Dave 420). It rocks. But as I was listening to it, I could not help but think that Dave should be doing shit like this. It rocks but does not come off like a retread of the tired '80s sounds. I know that a couple of the "softer" tunes are getting decent airplay, but there is stuff on the disc that will make your teeth rattle.

Clearly, Tommy is far and away the most talented member of the Crue and that talent is not merely limited to the redwood tree he's packing in his pants.