“People are hearing my sound – I might gain some fans, I might lose some fans, but what they’re hearing is all me”: Mick Mars reveals second track from his debut solo album

Mick Mars
(Image credit: Seraina Mars)

Former Mötley Crue guitarist Mick Mars is back with the second single from his debut solo album, with Right Side of Wrong showcasing a heavier and darker side to his string-bothering exploits.

It follows Loyal to the Lie, which was released last month, with the album, entitled The Other Side of Mars, releasing February 23.

On Right Side of Wrong, Mars channels Zakk Wylde-era Ozzy riffs across a one-riff wonder song that also boasts big, open choruses and a wailing, airy guitar solo that steps away from the more aggressive, bluesy solos he was known for in Mötley Crue.

While its chug-heavy riff doesn't re-invent the wheel, it’s refreshing to hear Mars sound so weighty, with the track adopting a slower pace than the record’s energetic lead single.

“When it comes to my playing, there’s the Mötley side and the Mars side,” the guitarist explains. “Either way, I always have a very clear vision of what I want to do. People are going to hear my tone - my sound. I am what I am. My feeling has always been, I might gain some fans, I might lose some fans. But what they’re hearing, it’s all me.”

In the video for the song, he can be seen plying a crisp white Fender Stratocaster with a black pickguard, which mirrors the track's lyrical theme of "the oxymoron of two individual minds viewing their position as the right one". 

The speckless guitar is a far cry from his road-beaten fiesta red 1962 Stratocaster, with which Mars is arguably most synonymous.

When Mick Mars stepped down from touring with Mötley Crue at the end of 2022, many may have expected the guitarist to slip into the background. Having battled with Ankylosing Spondylitis all his life, making touring the world an increasingly challenging feat, the 72-year-old has instead dived headfirst into writing a solo album.

Like everyone, I’ve got a limited number of years, so I'm gonna do all I can to do a lot of stuff

“Like everyone, I’ve got a limited number of years,” Mars explains, “so, I'm gonna do all I can to do a lot of stuff.”

In a recent tell-all interview with Guitar World, Mars expanded on that feeling of gung-ho urgency, saying: “I’m all about new ideas now! I’ve been wanting to do this solo thing for a very long time. First thing’s first, there are always priorities; I had to do stuff with Mötley… now it’s my time! In fact, I’m already working on my next album. Why stop the momentum, right?!”

The band he’s assembled is certainly interesting. He says that Korn drummer Ray Luzier “insisted” on playing on the record, after Mars had co-written much of The Other Side of Mars with Winger and former Alice Cooper keyboardist, Paul Taylor. Vocal duties are split between Jacob Bunton (Orianthi, Gus G) and Brion Gamboa, whilst Chris Collier, another Nashville resident, handled bass, mixing and mastering.

Mars also reunited with producer Michael Wagener for the record, with the pair having first worked together on Mötley Crüe’s 1981 debut, Too Fast For Love. Mars promises new musical territories, with the promise of everything from blues and power ballads to “gothic-tinged soundscapes” and “cinematic instrumental workouts”.

The record isn't even out yet, but Mars is already working hard on its follow–up.

“I'm trying to keep growing,” says Mars, “because if you stop learning new things, if you stop playing new things, if you close your mind, you’re done. You have to keep moving and creating!”

For more information and pre-orders, head to the Mick Mars website.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Phil Weller

A freelance writer with a penchant for music that gets weird, Phil is a regular contributor to Prog, Guitar World, and Total Guitar magazines and is especially keen on shining a light on unknown artists. Outside of the journalism realm, you can find him writing angular riffs in progressive metal band, Prognosis, in which he slings an 8-string Strandberg Boden Original, churning that low string through a variety of tunings. He's also a published author and is currently penning his debut novel which chucks fantasy, mythology and humanity into a great big melting pot.