Friday Night Music Byte
Lynnrockets recently watched the film Julie & Julia about a thirty year old New Yorker who decided to cook every dish in one of Julia Childs’ cookbooks and to blog about it. It was a novel idea so we decided to copy it. No, we will not be cooking in the usual sense (that could start a fire). Rather, we will adapt the recipe a day concept to our nightly music bytes. From now to infinity (didn’t somebody else coin that phrase?) we will post a music video and brief description of the artist or song in a sort of alphabetical order as culled from Tom Moon’s wonderful reference book, 1,000 Recordings To Hear Before You Die (A Listener’s Life List). The book describes both whole albums (remember those) and individual songs from all music genres that are essential listening. Do yourselves a favor and purchase this book. Where the book deals with an individual song, we will post that song, but when an entire album is the subject, we will exercise judicial discretion and post a single song therefrom. So what do you say, let’s get cooking…
We have come full circle by going through the alphabet once already, so here we are back at the letter A. Coincidentally, today’s band is Aerosmith.
Aerosmith Toys In The Attic – “Toys In The Attic” and “Sweet Emotion” (1975)
Aerosmith didn’t invent blues-rock, wasn’t the first to dish bawdy lyrics, and really brought nothing innovative to the game – unless you count the scarves vocalist Steven Tyler tied around his microphone stand. Yet with their third album, Toys In The Attic, the Boston quintet took the basic three-chord guitar scheme, added some old fashioned show-biz razzle-dazzle, and gave “rawk” a new attitude.
Toys is thirty-seven minutes of teenage-boy air guitar bliss – all double-time peel outs and leering talk of fast girls, with a bit of rebellion on the side. Its pulverizing backbeats and tightly wound riff boogie ooze horniness (“Walk This Way” still the prototype rock strut). Its songs about drugs (“Uncle Salty” and “Sweet Emotion” the cleverest deployment of bass marimba in rock history) are disciplined verse-chorus odes disguised as spacey meandering.
An instant hit that sold millions and established the band as arena headliners, Toys solidified the trick that the “Toxic Twins” songwriting team of Steven Tyler and Joe Perry would turn for decades: slightly sleazy bad-boy stuff made irresistible by fireworks on cue hook-craft.
“Toys In The Attic”