Saturday, May 21, 2016

40 Year Itch : Things Ain't What They're Supposed To Be

Blue Oyster Cult : This Ain't the Summer of Love

  On May 21, 1976 Blue Oyster Cult released their best-selling and best known album Agents Of Fortune. Credit goes to Buck Dharma's "(Don't Fear) The Reaper", a US #12 hit mistaken by some as pro-suicide thanks to the line "Romeo and Juliet are together in eternity".

   "I was actually kind of appalled when I first realized that some people were seeing it as an advertisement for suicide or something," says Dharma " That was not my intention at all. It is, like, not to be afraid of it (as opposed to actively bring it about). It's basically a love song where the love transcends the actual physical existence of the partners."

   The song may be better known these days for a Saturday Night Live skit than for its classic rock success.
   Recorded at The Record Plant at the same time Aerosmith was making Rocks and Kiss was making Destroyer, Agents of Fortune may be more radio friendly than past efforts ( and it does feature guest vocals from Allen Lanier's then girlfriend, Patti Smith on "The Revenge of Vera Gemini") but that doesn't mean it's better.  Secret Treaties, from 1974, is the place to start for this "thinking man's hard rock band".

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