After 2 Record Store Releases in a row up for review, we are now on our third in a row and 6 total RSD releases from this band and all fantastic. Cheap Trick’s ‘Out to Get You! Live 1977’ is pretty freaking cool. This was very early on between the debut album and only months away from the release of their second album, In Color, which came out 3 months later. We get basically every song from those two albums (and one the crowd hadn’t even heard yet) as well as a couple from their third album (which hadn’t even been recorded or thought of yet), plus a handful of tracks that wouldn’t show up again for years.
They were hungry, energetic and fresh and yet still a little green. The release is from Record Store Day 2020 and is an exclusive release…well, not that exclusive since you can stream it but physically it is currently only available on vinyl. And there were only 4,700 on this limited release. The show is recorded over 4 performances over two days on June 3rd and 4th at The Whisky A Go Go in Los Angeles and we get 22 tracks of pure and utter joy.
These four unassuming gentlemen were a cross between rockers, nerds and plain quirky looking guys. Meshed together, they were a force to be reckoned with. The albums didn’t necessarily match the power that came from the stage and when you saw them, you had no idea the type of music that would flow from them. In 1977, this was pre-Budokan so the world wasn’t truly hip on them yet, but these performances captured here let us know that we had one of America’s greatest bands waiting to blow up on the world…and they did just that.
After the release of Cheap Trick’s second album, ‘In Color’, the band was getting quite a bit of recognition in Japan. So, a week after third album, ‘Heaven Tonight”, was released, the band did a quick tour in April of 1978 and they didn’t waste any time playing those songs. The band’s reception was nothing short of amazing. It was Beatlemania 2.0 as the Japanese fans went…well…fanatical. While in Japan, they decided to record the shows at Nippon Budokan in Tokyo and release the album in Japan only.
Here is a little fact for you, the recordings done at Nippon Budokan really sucked and the recording is actually the show in Osaka, but don’t tell anyone. Okay, don’t know if that is a fact, but I did read that somewhere so we will continue that statement here as it is cool if it is true. Regardless of where it was recorded, the show is amazing and the release in Japan on October 8, 1978 saw tremendous success, so much so that 30,000 copies of it were sold as imports to the US which prompted the label to finally release it in the US in February 1979 under the name ‘Cheap Trick at Budokan’. The album would go on to be one of the biggest selling albums in the band’s career selling over 3 million copies and go to #4 on the Billboard Charts. Rolling Stones said it was one of the 500 greatest albums of all time in 2003 where it ranked at #426.
The album also introduced us to 2 new songs that had not been released yet and one of those, “Need Your Love” would wind up on their next album ‘Dream Police’. The other song, “Lookout”, was a leftover from their debut and would end up being released as a bonus track on later editions of the album starting in 1998. Due to the popularity of Budokan, the ‘Dream Police’ released date got pushed back as they were still having hit singles from this album. Not a bad problem to have actually.