Well and truly buried are the musical origins of this band from their early 70’s period. This is about as smooth as it gets for Blue Oyster Cult; through the hey-day of the 80’s arena rock era.
Written by: gdmonline
ARTIST: Blue Oyster Cult
ALBUM: The Revolution By Night
SERIAL: FC 38947
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
LINEUP: Eric Bloom – vocals, guitars * Buck Dharma Roeser – lead guitar, keyboards, vocals * Allen Lanier – keyboards, piano * Joe Bouchard – bass, guitar, vocoder, lead vocals ‘Light Years Of Love’ * Rick Downey – drums
Additional Musicians: Larry Fast – synthesizers, programming * Aldo Nova – guitar and synthesizers on ‘Take Me Away’ * Gregg Winter – backing vocals on ‘Eyes on Fire’ * Randy Jackson – bass on ‘Shooting Shark’ * Marc Baum – saxophone on ‘Shooting Shark’
TRACK LISTING: 01 Take Me Away * 02 Eyes On Fire * 03 Shooting Shark * 04 Veins * 05 Shadow Of California * 06 Feel The Thunder * 07 Let Go * 08 Dragon Lady * 09 Light Years Of Love
WEBLINKS: Site Link
After a teenage upbringing of this band from ‘Agents Of Fortune’ onward, I think it’s time to complete the BOC jigsaw puzzle once and for all. Having rediscovered Blue Oyster Cult later in life, there are a few tracks from their 1980-1988 era that have intrigued me enough through You Tube videos, so as to tidy up their discography on this site.
I don’t remember them doing as well as they did in 1981 with ‘Fire Of Unknown Origin’. Perhaps I was pre-occupied with the success of Journey, Foreigner, REO Speedwagon and Billy Squier that nearly everyone else in AOR-land was forgotten about.
Certainly FOUO did really well, with ‘Burnin’ For You’ making it to #1 on the Mainstream Tracks Chart and brushing the Billboard Top 40 (position #40). The album did well too, making it to #24. With success comes an equal dose of disappointment; that being the forced departure of long-time drummer Albert Bouchard.
By the time late 1983’s ‘The Revolution By Night’ appeared, the new drummer was Rick Downey, and the band continued to change it up with quirky songs touching on sci-fi, and some off-beat edges seriously threatening the crown of The Tubes for kings of wackiness. Not quite though, Blue Oyster Cult still retain a serious edge, and keep things smooth and melodic all throughout.
Fans of Aldo Nova should enjoy the opening ‘Take Me Away’; as he co-wrote it with Eric Bloom, and provides guitars and synths too. It’s a solid cutting effort. AOR fans should take to ‘Eyes Of Fire’ with gusto. Like the track before (re: songwriter, guest player), it was written by a chap called Gregg Winter, who also provided backing vocals for it.
Third track is the interesting ‘Shooting Shark’. Penned originally by Patti Smith (who had an association with the band courtesy of her long-term relationship with Allen Lanier during the 70’s), the source was a poem, something Smith was very handy at writing back in the day. This track ended up being an MTV favourite. It’s certainly a lengthy track, the original was all of 7 minutes.
‘Veins’ is more pumping AOR high on the keyboard quotient without forgetting Buck Dharma’s guitar work. It has a touch of Twenty Twenty and the Sweet Comfort Band in parts. Blue Oyster Cult take a dark turn with the intriguing ‘Shadow Of California’. If you read the lyrics, it appears to be a road trip kinda tune, perhaps for speed kings or bikies that traverse the highways, byways and freeways of California at night.. hence.. The revolution by night.. hint hint.
The night rider theme segues into ‘Feel The Thunder’, a tale of three bike riders who come across like a modern day four horsemen of the apocalypse minus one. It’s a real motorhead tune with loads of motorbike revving in the background. Getting back to the studio, I love the infectious punch of ‘Let Go’, which takes a dose of Michael Stanley Band and mixes it with Donnie Iris‘s quirky madness. The stomping anthem will be familiar to many of you.
Guitar riffs fly off Buck Dharma’s handle for ‘Dragon Lady’, he lets fly with some great solo work. Bassist Joe Bouchard takes the lead vocal spot for the closer ‘Light Years Of Love’. It’s a wistful pomp driven effort, but sadly it’s the weakest track on the album, and to be honest probably shouldn’t have been on the album at all.
Well and truly buried are the musical origins of this band from their early 70’s period. This is about as smooth as it gets for Blue Oyster Cult; through the hey-day of the 80’s arena rock era. BOC did continue on for two more albums in this style: ‘Club Ninja’ and ‘Imaginos’.
So listeners got a good twelve year duration of radio rock/AOR in what was a productive era for the band. This one wasn’t as successful as its predecessor ‘Fire Of Unknown Origin’, but it’s well worthy of investigating along with the rest of their discography through the early 80’s period.
Entire Album (Select Tracks)