The Kid Rocks

Grade: A

"If it looks good, you'll see it/If it sounds good, you'll hear it/If it's marketed right, you'll buy it/But...if it's real, you'll feel it" - Kid Rock, from "Cocky"

I was happy to find Kid Rock's new album, "Cocky," under the Christmas tree.

Kid's musical stylings have evolved since "Devil Without A Cause." His latest installment features two duets, "Picture," with Sheryl Crow, and the bonus track "WCSR," with Snoop Dogg.

"Picture," a haunting ballad about life on the road and the inevitable sex, drugs, rock 'n' roll and groupies that follow, is the best song on "Cocky."

Crow's and Kid Rock's voices mesh nicely on the tune as they describe how they hid each other's pictures because they can't stand to look at them while lying next to someone else.

The duet with Snoop Dogg, which on the surface had potential, is awkward and full of hard-to-dechipher mumblings and expletives.

Kid Rock's stardom rose with the release of the platinum album, 1998's "Devil Without A Cause," which featured the singles, "Bawitdaba," "Cowboy" and "Only God Knows Why."

The title of his new release, "Cocky," may refer to how Kid calls himself an "American Bad Ass." In the title track, however, Kid reflects: "They say I'm cocky and I say, 'What?' It ain't bragging if you can back it up." He also mentions that he has 15 million albums sold and that he has more money than Matchbox 20 and gets more women than Mark McGrath (of Sugar Ray).

The disc shows Kid holding up each of his middle fingers, perhaps as a follow-up to "Devil Without A Cause," where only one bird was flipped.

Kid Rock has been showing his patriotism a lot lately like most Americans since Sept. 11. In his "Forever" video Kid Rock wears a giant flag robe while his girlfriend, Pamela Anderson, is draped in a giant American flag. The "Forever" video also shows how manic Kid Rock's fans can become during one of his live shows as they scream and hold up signs.

Overall, "Cocky" has many good tracks including "Forever," which is the second best song on the album after "Picture" and seems to be a sure hit. Other songs on "Cocky" are noteworthy too such as "Lay It On Me," "What I Learned Out On The Road" and the title number. "Cocky" is a requisite for any rock fan's CD collection.


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