Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Eugeology: Eugene's List of Hard Rock Albums and Possible Gems Part 23 - Blue Oyster Cult 'Tyranny and Mutation'
“The Red and the Black” is a fitting opening for ‘Tyranny and Mutation’, the second album from Blue Oyster Cult. It’s noisy rock and roll with a hard rock gut punch that possesses a bit of boogie-ness that makes you want more of this terrific album.
Although I’m not a huge fan that owns everything BOC put out, I have a deep appreciation for everything they’ve done. For one thing, they’re not “cock rockers” that sing about their many conquests in and out of the sack. BOC wrote songs that are stories. Some are serious. Some can be quite humorous. And some can be downright head scratchers that have you picking through the lyrics to find out what they hell they’re singing about.
Even then you won’t get the answers that you seek. That’s one of the many beauties of the Blue Oyster Cult.
Originally, I wanted to put ‘Cultosaurus Erectus’ on this list but I felt that this second album definitely provided a map to where the band was going to go in the future. It was a mutation. There are smatterings of pop sensibilities that pop up later on ‘Fire of an Unknown Origin’ and the huge ‘Agents of Fortune’. And there are plenty of songs that pack a wallop for those craving face melting hard rock.
To me, this album sounds like an educated Grand Funk Railroad. There are plenty of amps pumping out the hard rock, but the lyrics make you listen deeper into the music. “Hot Rails to Hell” is a perfect example.
The song titles don’t really stick with you, but the tunes surely will.
Were BOC an American progressive rock band?
You can’t exactly pin that category on them based upon the music, but lyrically there’s an argument.
‘Tyranny and Mutation’ is a riff-tastic album and if you claim that hard rock is your favorite music of choice, you need it in your collection. Hell, I would recommend everything up to ‘Club Ninja’ and even the live albums.
For me, Blue Oyster Cult will always be that “weird” kid in your class that loved horror movies and Edgar Allan Poe. You didn’t want to spend a lot of time to get to know him, but you found him intriguing and he made you pause to appreciate the darker side of things.
In my opinion, there’s not a bad song on this album. And again, it was a toss up with ‘Cultosaurus Erectus’. So give that album a shot too.
Here's Tim Beeman's take on it. We're still waiting on "Jet Setting" Jon Lowder to get back on board.