Friday, June 9, 2017

Thin Lizzy, "Rosalie"

Despite my love of 1970s rock music, I'd never really picked up much on Thin Lizzy, except for the obvious hits. Then last week, in the midst of my continuing obsession with early Bob Seger, looked up "Rosalie," since that was a cover of one of his early tracks.

Well, let me tell you, it pretty much blew me away. It's got the down and dirty rock and roll feel of those Seger tracks, but Thin Lizzy blow it into the stratosphere with their searing twin lead guitars. Phil Lynott also gives the song that cool, tough vocal that he excelled at. Most of all, it's got a bit of sassy groove to it, and for that reason I have not been able to stop listening.

Thin Lizzy might in fact be the ultimate tweener band. They finally hit on the right approach with songs like this in 1975, but had a sound that was not just run of the mill mid-70s hard rock. (Platonic form of this was Foghat.) They dressed like the Ramones, but their more intricate songs and twin lead guitar duels shaded over into metal, without the group ever being a metal band. Nevertheless, they get cited a lot by metal artists as an influence. They also hung out with Sex Pistols Paul Cook and Steve Jones, giving the band some punk cred in the late 1970s. If you want evidence of how good this ecumenical approach could sound, listen to Rosalie.

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