“Kickstart My Heart” was released as the second single from Motley Crue’s 1989 album, Dr. Feelgood. The single was released on November 20, 1989, and peaked at number 27 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song was written by band member Nikki Sixx about a drug overdose he experienced in 1987, in which he had been declared clinically dead before being revived by CPR.
I was 14 and in the ninth grade when this single was released, and it was during the time that “hair metal” was at the peak of its popularity. Admittedly, I didn’t get into Motley Crue until I heard “Dr. Feelgood,” which was the lead-off single for the album. By having the appreciation I had for that song, it’s not surprising that I was receptive to “Kickstart My Heart” right away. It’s an intense song, but it’s also catchy as heck. While it didn’t end up being a major pop hit, it still managed to perform pretty well on the mainstream chart.
The music video is basically a performance clip, but it also intercuts footage of various extreme sports. While this intercutting does sound a little strange at first, it really does work with the sound of the song. The beginning of the video also includes a brief cameo from the late Sam Kinison as the band’s driver. While this music video isn’t anything earth-shattering, it still leaves an impression on a viewer by the time it’s done.