Tyranny and Mutation
Tyranny and Mutation (stylized on the cover as THE BLVE ÖYSTER CVLT: TYRANNY AND MVTATION) is the second studio album by American hard rock band Blue Öyster Cult, released on February 11, 1973 by Columbia Records. It was produced by Murray Krugman and Sandy Pearlman. On May 12, 1973, the album peaked at No. 122 on the Billboard 200 chart.
|Tyranny and Mutation|
|Studio album by|
|Released||11 February 1973|
|Studio||Columbia Studios, New York City|
|Producer||Murray Krugman, Sandy Pearlman|
|Blue Öyster Cult chronology|
|Singles from Tyranny and Mutation|
The only single released from the album, "Hot Rails to Hell," did not chart.
Composition and songsEdit
The song "The Red and the Black," with lyrics referencing the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, is a re-titled, re-recorded version of "I'm on the Lamb But I Ain't No Sheep" from the band's eponymous debut album. The song was later covered by the Minutemen and Band of Susans. AllMusic critic Hal Horowitz called it "one of the best and most propulsive rockers in the BÖC catalog."
|Christgau's Record Guide||B+|
|Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal||8/10|
|The Rolling Stone Album Guide|||
Tyranny and Mutation received mixed reviews from contemporary critics. Gordon Fletcher of Rolling Stone wrote a raving review for the album and called Blue Öyster Cult "one of the best bands America's got." Robert Christgau, writing for The Village Voice, praised the band's disregard for "the entire heavy ethos", but wondered if the "parody-surreal refraction of the abysmal 'poetry' of heavy" in the lyrics could be a start for a return to conformism. The Rolling Stone Album Guide described the album as "one molten hook after another" and praised the four-song "opening suite" comprising the first side of the album. On the contrary, Mike Saunders of Phonograph Records judged Tyranny and Mutation "a real disappointment", definitely inferior to BÖC debut album and lacking "the sort of brashness that almost defines hard rock or metal music." Ian MacDonald of the British New Musical Express was very critical of the Pearlman/Meltzer "crass Satan-speed-and-sad-ism" lyrics and of the band's music which "tend to leave the listener aurally shaken, but emotionally unstirred."
Modern reviews are generally positive. Thom Jurek of AllMusic noted how BÖC "brightened their sound and deepened their mystique" on this album and described the music as "screaming, methamphetamine-fueled rock & roll that was all about attitude, mystery, and a sense of nihilistic humor that was deep in the cuff", judging Tyranny and Mutation a "classic album" as much as its follow-up Secret Treaties. Martin Popoff in his Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal acknowledged the progress shown in production values from their debut, but found the sound "still mired in an oddly appealing maze of cobwebs", despite Blue Öyster Cult parading a slew of classic songs and "quickly becoming something very imposing".
|Side one – The Black|
|1.||"The Red & the Black"||Eric Bloom, Albert Bouchard, Sandy Pearlman||Bloom||4:20|
|2.||"O.D.'d on Life Itself"||Bloom, A. Bouchard, Joe Bouchard, Pearlman||Bloom||4:47|
|3.||"Hot Rails to Hell"||J. Bouchard||J. Bouchard||5:12|
|4.||"7 Screaming Diz-Busters"||A. Bouchard, J. Bouchard, Donald Roeser, Pearlman||Bloom||7:01|
|Side two – The Red|
|5.||"Baby Ice Dog"||Bloom, A. Bouchard, Patti Smith||Bloom||3:29|
|6.||"Wings Wetted Down"||A. Bouchard, J. Bouchard||J. Bouchard||4:12|
|7.||"Teen Archer"||Bloom, Roeser, Richard Meltzer||Roeser||3:57|
|8.||"Mistress of the Salmon Salt (Quicklime Girl)"||A. Bouchard, Pearlman||Bloom||5:08|
|2001 CD reissue bonus tracks|
|9.||"Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll" (live; originally from the promo-only Blue Öyster Cult Bootleg EP)||A. Bouchard, Pearlman, Roeser||4:44|
|10.||"Buck's Boogie" (studio version)||D. Roeser, A. Bouchard, Pearlman||5:22|
|11.||"7 Screaming Diz-Busters" (live; from the band's personal archives)||A. Bouchard, J. Bouchard, Roeser, Pearlman||14:01|
|12.||"O.D.'d on Life Itself" (live; from the band's personal archives)||Bloom, A. Bouchard, J. Bouchard, Pearlman||4:52|
- Band members
- Eric Bloom – rhythm guitar, synthesizers, vocals
- Donald "Buck Dharma" Roeser – lead guitar, vocals
- Allen Lanier – keyboards, rhythm guitar
- Joe Bouchard – bass guitar, keyboards, vocals
- Albert Bouchard – drums, vocals
- "Tyranny and Mutation - Blue Öyster Cult - Releases - AllMusic". AllMusic.
- "Tyranny and Mutation". Blue Öyster Cult Official Website.
- Kaye, Lenny (2001). Tyranny and Mutation (CD Booklet). Blue Öyster Cult. New York City: Columbia Records/Legacy Recordings. p. 4. 502235 2.
- Tyranny and Mutation (CD Booklet). Blue Öyster Cult. New York City: Columbia Records/Legacy Recordings. 2001. pp. 6–11. 502235 2.CS1 maint: others (link)
- Horowitz, Hal. "Blue Öyster Cult- The Red and the Black song review". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved August 31, 2018.
- Jurek, Thom. "Blue Öyster Cult - Tyranny and Mutation review". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved October 25, 2012.
- Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: B". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved February 22, 2019 – via robertchristgau.com.
- Popoff, Martin (October 2003). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 1: The Seventies. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 53. ISBN 978-1894959025.
- Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian David (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon & Schuster. p. 87. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
- Fletcher, Gordon (April 12, 1973). "Album Reviews: Blue Oyster Cult – Tyranny and Mutation". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 12, 2009. Retrieved October 25, 2012.
- Saunders, Mike (April 1973). "Blue Oyster Cult: Tyranny and Mutation". Phonograph Record. Vol. 3 no. 9. Retrieved September 15, 2018.
- MacDonald, Ian (March 16, 1974). "Blue Oyster Cult: Tyranny And Mutation (Columbia Import)". NME. Retrieved September 15, 2018.
- "Tyranny and Mutation Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on June 6, 2014. Retrieved October 25, 2012.