Zz Top - Tres Hombres

ZZ Top – Tres Hombres

87 / 100

This was the album though that paved the way for Texan boogie legends ZZ Top to attain the heights they would later reap.

Written by: Dangerzone

ALBUM: Tres Hombres
LABEL: London
YEAR: 1973
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Billy Gibbons – vocals, guitars * Dusty Hill – bass * Frank Beard – drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Waiting For The Bus * 02 Jesus Just Left Chicago * 03 Beer Drinkers And Hell Raisers * 04 Master Of Sparks * 05 Hot Blue And Righteous * 06 Move Me On Down The Line * 07 Precious And Grace * 08 La Grange * 09 Sheik * 10 Have You Heard?



After the success of 1983’s ‘Eliminator’ it seemed the early phase of ZZ Top’s career was forgotten for a long period. This was the album though that paved the way for the Texan boogie legends to attain the heights they would later reap, albeit in a vastly different musical sense.

This was their third album, following 1971’s ‘ZZ Top’s First Album’ and 1972’s ‘Rio Grande Mud,’ which had established the bands brand of heavy blues. This was a notable improvement however and set the blueprint for the rest of the 70’s for the trio.

The Songs

The bands form of boogie was light years ahead of many US hard rock acts in ’73 and ‘Waitin’ For The Bus’ wouldn’t sound out of place if it was released in 2010.

It’s easy to see here where Point Blank took their cues from. The blues of ‘Jesus Just Left Chicago’ is grindingly slow and despite being recognized as a classic, is no match for the onslaught of ‘Beer Drinkers And Hell Raisers,’ one of the best tracks of the bands career. This is as heavy as boogie gets and a real demonstration of the bands power.

Far more relaxed is ‘Hot, Blue and Righteous’, which could pass for a remake of Nazareth‘s stale ‘Love Hurts.’ The highlight is ‘La Grange’, one of the bands best known cuts and for good reason with those huge riffs. This is on par with anything from Montrose‘s debut that year.

Other tracks such as ‘Move Me On Down The Line’ recall BTO at their best, but ZZ Top had the say on who was more advanced. I’m staggered this was nearly 50 plus years ago.

In Summary

This was the first really classic album from ZZ Top and still rates as easily one of their best. Those weaned on the ‘Eliminator’ era would probably have been amazed at how the band once sounded. The band did opt for this path again in the 90’s, but never again sounded as good as they did here.

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