For Mötley Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx, recording the debut album from his side project, 58, was a chance to "take complete reckless abandon toward music," he said recently.
In fact, a lot of what listeners will hear on Diet for a New America, due June 20, is simply a result of calling heads or tails.
"We'd flip a coin for who would play bass, who would play guitar, who would do the lead vocal," Sixx said. "Whoever lost would usually have to do it. We just didn't take it seriously at all."
58, which also features David Darling (Boxing Gandhis), Steven Gibb (son of Bee Gees singer Barry Gibb) and percussion player Bucket, often went against the grain intentionally.
"We would purposely sing in the wrong key and say, 'It's perfect, don't fix it,' " Sixx said. "And later we'd go and do a harmony to the vocal line that was in the wrong key that would make it even weirder, and then we would add some music that would somehow suck it back into the right atmosphere of the song. It was just this experimental thing, and then if we got tired of it, we would just erase the tape."
Despite the experimentation, Sixx said he sees Diet as a pop album. "That's the last thing I meant to do," he said. "But in the end, no matter how experimental it is, it's always gonna be about songwriting."
The LP, which features such standout tracks as "Piece of Candy" and "Don't Laugh (You Might Be Next)," is the first album to be released on Sixx's Americoma label.