Cheer Up Post #4792

riding-on-the-storm would like a post featuring musicians David Bowie, Myles Kennedy, Dan Auerbach, and Slash. Enjoy!

***Disclaimer: Most of the images used do not belong to me. If you see one that’s yours, and you would like credit or to have it removed/replaced, please just ask.

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Cheap Trick: Cheap Trick (1977)

Cheap Trick’s first album landed 40 years ago this month, launching one of classic rock’s most hot-and-cold careers – both chronologically, and in terms of provoking wide extremes of worshipful and unimpressed responses. 

And, while I personally stand closer to the “worship” camp myself (it’s hard not to, if you’ve lived in or around Chicago), I’m not among the sycophants who think Cheap Trick’s debut is as brilliant as their next three LPs, In Color, Heaven Tonight, and Dream Police.

Oh, it’s close … but I feel that punky songs like “Hot Love” and “He’s a Whore,” or the tribal beat of “Elo Kiddies,” sound a little monochromatic compared to what soon followed – reflecting the album’s iconic, black and white cover image, I might add.

I much prefer the slower songs here, like Trick’s cover of Terry Reid’s “Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace,” the seductive “Mandocello,” and my favorite by far, the irresistible but mildly sinister (ain’t that Cheap Trick in a nutshell) “Taxman, Mr. Thief.”

Also, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that no songs from this LP made the cut for At Budokan – except one of its outtakes, the sublime “Lookout,” and that just underscores my point that something was just off here.

That being said, if only more albums were just a little bit “off” in such a wonderful way as this one – an incredible introduction, by any measure.

More Cheap Trick: In Color, At Budokan, Dream Police, Found All the Parts, All Shook Up, One on One.