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Great Rock Albums of 1983: ZZ Top- Eliminator

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2016 by 80smetalman

220px-ZZ_Top_-_Eliminator

I wasn’t completely accurate when I said that Molly Hatchet’s “No Guts No Glory” album was the first vinyl record I bought after leaving the marines. In fact, I was only telling half the truth because I bought the record through a mail order record club but not only did I buy Molly Hatchet, I had also bought “Eliminator” by ZZ Top and they came in the same package. I won’t lose any sleep over it though, after all I had two great albums from 1983 to listen one right after the other, which I did.

For many people, ZZ Top’s “Eliminator” album epitomized 1983. It was one of those albums that brought people of different musical tastes together. Johnny-come-lately trendies liked it because ZZ Top sounded a little different and back then, anything to mainstream enthusiasts that sounded different was branded new wave. However, for harder rockers like me as well as those who had been listening to them for years, it was the fact that ZZ Top managed to do so well without compromising their musical style, well not too much anyway. They retained their Texas-bad boy-boogie-blues style rock that had endeared them to listeners such as myself. Believe me, unlike some artists about this time, “Eliminator” has never had me pining for their earlier classics like “Tres Hombres” or “El Loco.” It’s great as it stands.

The main reason why I like is that Billy Gibbons just basically rips through the entire album with his guitar solos. Pick any song on this album and guaranteed, I will be rocking away to his solo on it. But while Billy is sensational, you must give credit to the Dusty Hill and Frank Beard who must be one of the tightest rhythm sections in music. Another plus for “Eliminator” is the songs are so upbeat without being mushy. Most of the songs are topics we can all identify with. Yes, every girl is crazy about a sharp dressed man. It’s just too bad I didn’t take those words to heart back then and more than the average man, I am definitely a sucker for a nice pair of legs. We’ve all eaten TV dinners at one time in our lives. Oh, I do like that song because ZZ Top proved that they could add keyboards and still sound great. Then I think everybody gets the innuendo with “I Got the Six.” I could say that the song was about a dice game but I don’t think anyone would believe me somehow. One more thing, I think that “Got Me Under Pressure” is a very underrated song with some amusing lyrics.

“She don’t like other women, she likes whips and chains.
She likes cocaine and filppin’ out with great Danes.
She’s about all I can handle, it’s too much for my brain.”

The famous ZZ Top Eliminator car

The famous ZZ Top Eliminator car

Another first for me with this album was that it was the first one where I was influenced by video. Videos for the songs “Gimme All Your Lovin,'” “Sharp Dressed Man” and “Legs” all featured the famous eliminator car, (see above) and those three lovely ladies. Now, I’ll be the first one to say that ZZ Top didn’t need such things for this album to succeed because the music is that good but on the other hand, who am I to complain?

Remember these ladies from the ZZ Top videos?

Remember these ladies from the ZZ Top videos?

Track Listing:

  1. Gimme All Your Lovin’
  2. Got Me Under Pressure
  3. Sharp Dressed Man
  4. I Need You Tonight
  5. I Got the Six
  6. Legs
  7. Thug
  8. TV Dinners
  9. Dirty Dog
  10. If Only I Could Flag Her Down
  11. Bad Girl
ZZ Top

ZZ Top

Billy Gibbons- guitar, vocals

Dusty Hill- bass, keyboards, vocals

Frank Beard- drums, percussion

“Eliminator” by ZZ Top brings back fond memories of 1983 for me. It was a great album and on a personal note, it was a great one to return to civilian life to. It’s an album in the ZZ Top style that happened to gain loads of commercial success. Well done!

Next post: A Revelation That Might Interest Some Readers!

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

1982- The Floodgates are Truly Open

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2014 by 80smetalman

To be honest, I was a little nervous about the year 1982 and expected a bit a turbulence during the ride through it. The reason for this was that I spent eight months out of the year overseas with the marines. From the middle of January to the very end of June, I made my second deployment to the Mediterranean and Indian Ocean. Then in the October, I went to Okinawa for the remainder of the year and the first three months of the following one. In fact, October 9, 1982 never existed for me as I was flying across the International Date Line. Because I was overseas so much, the year was fairly barren for me musically and I worried that I might not have enough albums to visit during the year. But, I will persevere and thanks to Youtube, I can listen to albums from that year that I never got the chance to listen to back then.

Iron Maiden

Iron Maiden

With the benefit of hindsight, I can say that in 1982, the new wave of British heavy metal (NWOBHM) had its claws firmly gripped on the industry. I saw this to be true when I was in Toulon, France in the May. Previously, I had heard of Iron Maiden but it wasn’t until I heard a song, I can’t remember which one, on a juke box in a bar there that I finally got my ears blown away by them. Of course, there were great metal delights served up by the likes of Judas Priest and Motorhead as well as many other rock and metal acts. It seems my journey through what turns out to be an important year that almost passed me by and I am going to put right something I got wrong in the said year. See, I never listened to Van Halen’s “Diver Down” album because a couple of marine buddies bought it while we were in France and said that the album sucked. Again, curse me for simply taking their word. I will listen to this album during the course of my trip through 1982 and give you my own thoughts on it.

Van Halen

Van Halen

As I go down the road of metal history, I realise that while I may have missed out on quite a bit of music history on account of military service, the year itself was a phenomenal one for metal. Thanks to NWOBHM and others, the floodgates opened and metal began to flood the world.

Next post: The Police- Ghost in the Machine

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London