I suppose that I am still on my nostalgic music binge because I found myself listening to the ZZ Top discography in the car two weeks ago. As fond as my memories of that band are, it seems that with a notable exception (Degüello in 1979), most of the albums had two hits and the rest were mostly misses. Worse, after the explosive success of Eliminator and its follow-up, Afterburner, they just recycled the same over-produced sound in a factory-like way for the next 15 years. The albums before Degüello were actually pretty good, nice and bluesy with lots of rude, tongue-in-cheek humor (Pearl Necklace and Tube Snake Boogie from El Loco in particular come to mind), but one could have hoped that they could have gone higher after Eliminator, but instead we got the appropriately titled Recycler. OK, so I’ll admit that like everyone else my age, I dreamed of a slow dance with Molly Ringwald or Uma Thurman while Rough Boy off of Afterburner was playing but then that song could be exchanged with say, Drive by The Cars, without any real difference. Oh well, I suppose that’s the way it goes sometimes. Perhaps they just peaked too early…or were too bored to continue to innovate…
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