Sunday, January 15, 2017

"Legs" by ZZ Top

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  1911
Date:  05/19/1984
Debut:  64
Peak:  8
Weeks:  19
Genre:  Blues-Rock

Pop Bits:  The band's experiment with a more synth-driven sound was paying off well for them. Their album Eliminator was shaping up to be a major hit. The LP's first two singles were Top 10 hits at Rock while also crossing over to the Pop chart. Both were enhanced by themed MTV videos that got into heavy rotation. However, it would be this third single that would really push the album into a whole other realm. Thanks to the third video in their Eliminator trilogy, this song attracted a larger audience, which allowed the song to become the band's first Top 10 at Pop. It would also be another hit at Rock getting to #3. This boosted album sales considerably and even though it would only peak at #9, it would be a consistent seller. A year and a half after its release the album would be certified 4x platinum. By 1996, it was awarded Diamond status (10 million copies) and would be the band's best selling LP.

ReduxReview:  This is one of those cases where there is quite a difference between the album version of the song and the single version. The album version (posted above) is very clean sounding with the guitars forward and the synths more in the background. The single version (also available on Spotify) pushes the synths forward and adds more reverb. It makes for a fuller sound, but a bit on the muddy side. Initially, the fuller sounding single version caught my ear, but I think the album version is better. The focus is on the guitar work rather than beefy synths. Really, you can't go wrong with either of them.

ReduxRating:  8/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) This song got an unexpected boost courtesy of a new mix. In addition to the single version of the song, which amped up the synth sound, a dance mix was also created. It proved popular in the clubs and the song made it to #13 on the Dance chart. It would be their first and most popular entry on that chart. Two future singles would find their way on to the Dance chart, but they were far less successful peaking only in the 40s.  2) The video for this song won the MTV Music Video Award for Best Group Video in the award show's inaugural year. They were nominated in that category twice that year. The other nod was for their video to "Sharp Dressed Man."


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