|Studio album by Aerosmith|
|Released||May 3, 1976|
|Recorded||February–March 1976 at The Wherehouse and The Record Plant|
|Genre||Hard rock, blues rock, heavy metal|
|Producer||Aerosmith and Jack Douglas|
|Singles from Rocks|
Rocks is the fourth album by American rock band Aerosmith, released May 3, 1976. Allmusic described Rocks as having "captured Aerosmith at their most raw and rocking". Rocks was ranked #176 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. It has greatly influenced many people in the hard rock and heavy metal community, including Guns N' Roses and Metallica. The album was a commercial success, charting three singles on the Billboard Hot 100, two of which reached the Top 40 ("Back in the Saddle" and "Last Child"). The album was one of the first albums to ship platinum when it was released. The album has since gone quadruple platinum.
"Back in the Saddle"
The song features Joe Perry playing a six-string bass, and was released as a single on March 22, 1977. The song was covered by former Skid Row-vocalist Sebastian Bach on his 2007 album Angel Down, as a duet with Guns N' Roses-singer Axl Rose.
A blues and funk -fused tune, which was partly written by lead singer Steven Tyler and guitarist Brad Whitford. The lyrics contain many double-entendre lyrics from Tyler. The song remains a favorite among many Aerosmith fans. It is said that Brad Whitford created the riff after listening to The Meters, and that the band wrote the rest in the studio. Live, Whitford plays lead guitar on the song. The song was also included in the music rhythm game Guitar Hero II. The song was released as a single on May 27, 1976 and features Paul Prestopino playing a banjo.
"Rats in the Cellar"
Written, as Tom Hamilton described it, "taking this thing The Yardbirds created, and making it balls to the wall". It was conceived as a counterpart to Toys in the Attic, and inspired by the death of the band's drug dealer. The song was released as a promo single for the album.
"Sick as a Dog"
"Sick as a Dog" is the only song on Rocks that features Tom Hamilton playing a guitar instead of an electric bass and features both Joe Perry (during the main part of the song) and Steven Tyler (during the ending guitar solo) on electric bass. According to an interview with Tom Hamilton, during the recording, Joe Perry handed over the bass to Steven Tyler at a pause near the end of the song, so that Joe Perry could switch over to lead guitar.
With "Back in the Saddle", "Nobody's Fault" (the heaviest song on the album), is one of former Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash's favorite Aerosmith songs, as well as that of Metallica leader James Hetfield. Thrash metal band Testament covered this song on their 1988 album, The New Order, as well as L.A. Guns contributing a cover of the song for their 2004 covers album Rips the Covers Off. Mötley Crüe vocalist Vince Neil covered this song on his 2010 solo album Tattoos & Tequila.
This song is an important contribution to the band's catalogue by Brad Whitford, who cites it as his favorite Aerosmith song. Joey Kramer has also cited "Nobody's Fault" as his favorite Aerosmith song (along with "Lord of the Thighs). It has also been said that the song is about earthquakes.
"Lick and a Promise"
"Lick and a Promise" is a hard rocking song about "going out there and putting on a great show." The Stone Temple Pilots were joined onstage in 1996 by Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, performing the song along with "Sweet Emotion".
- Slash says that "Rocks" was the album that inspired him to learn guitar.
- Rocks was one of Kurt Cobain's favorite albums, as he listed in his Journals.
- In 2003, the album was ranked number 176 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
- Mötley Crüe songwriter and bassist Nikki Sixx refers to it frequently in his book The Heroin Diaries.
- Metallica leader James Hetfield has identified "Rocks", as well as Aerosmith, to have been important influences in his music, stating that Aerosmith was the reason why he wanted to learn guitar.
- The song "Last Child" is a playable song in the video game Guitar Hero II.
- Also released as a 4-channel quadraphonic mix.
- "Back in the Saddle", "Nobody's Fault", "Rats in the Cellar" and "Combination" are playable songs on Guitar Hero: Aerosmith. "Back in the Saddle" is the only playable song from Guitar Hero: Aerosmith that appears in Guitar Hero: Smash Hits.
- Professional wrestler Chris Benoit used "Back in the Saddle" as his entrance theme in Extreme Championship Wrestling from 1994 to 1995.
- "Back in the Saddle" was featured in the movies Shanghai Noon, Red and The Fighter.
|The Rolling Stone Album Guide|||
Greg Prato of Allmusic said that the best songs on Rocks were "Back in the Saddle" and "Last Child", and compared the Joe Perry composition, "Combination", to a Rolling Stones song. He also said the album was more "raw" than Toys in the Attic, and thought overall Rocks was better than its predecessor. Ben Mitchell of Blender magazine, said that the group members' drug-use actually helped Rocks, and he also called the album "raw." Robert Christgau said that with Rocks Aerosmith was doing a good job of imitating Led Zeppelin, and that after Rocks the band began to lose steam.
|1.||"Back in the Saddle"||Steven Tyler, Joe Perry||4:40|
|2.||"Last Child"||Tyler, Brad Whitford||3:26|
|3.||"Rats in the Cellar"||Tyler, Perry||4:05|
|1.||"Sick as a Dog"||Tyler, Tom Hamilton||4:16|
|2.||"Nobody's Fault"||Tyler, Whitford||4:21|
|3.||"Get the Lead Out"||Tyler, Perry||3:41|
|4.||"Lick and a Promise"||Tyler, Perry||3:05|
Per sleeve notes
- Other album credits
- Bob Kelleher (Kelly) - tour director
- Mel Baister - associate tour director
- Nick Spigel & Henry Smith - road crew
- Album notes
"Dedicated to the memories of Anthony D. Perry and Herb Spar"
|Canada (RPM Top Albums)||14|
|Japanese Albums Chart||13|
|US Billboard 200||3|
|1976||"Home Tonight"||The Billboard Hot 100||71|
|"Last Child"||The Billboard Hot 100||21|
|1977||"Back in the Saddle"||The Billboard Hot 100||38|
|RIAA - USA||Gold||May 21, 1976|
|Platinum||July 9, 1976|
|2× Platinum||October 19, 1984|
|3× Platinum||December 21, 1988|
|4× Platinum||February 26, 2001|
|CIA – Canada||Gold||September 01, 1976|
|Platinum||November 01, 1976|
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