Tuesday, May 9, 2017

ZZ Top's First Five Albums Up For Reissue On 180-Gram Vinyl

ZZ Top will drop the needle into the groove for a new vinyl set that takes listeners on a rocking ride through the long running Texas trio's early years. It includes the band's first five albums pressed on heavyweight 180-gram vinyl, presented in a box made to look like the custom "Nudie Suits" worn by "That Little Ol' Band From Texas" on stage... around the world.

Cinco: The First Five LPs will be available on June 9 from Warner Bros. Records for a suggested retail price of $114.98. During the weeks leading up to the set's release, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers will be on tour in the U.S., with additional July dates in Europe.

Billy Gibbons, Dusty Hill, and Frank Beard released five albums between 1971 and 1976, including ZZ Top's First Album, Rio Grande Mud, Tres Hombres, Fandango! and Tejas.

It all began with the 1971 debut, ZZ Top's First Album. Recorded at Robin Hood Studios in Tyler, Texas, the record helped establish the group's signature blues-rock sound with tracks like "(Somebody Else Been) Shaking Your Tree," and "Brown Sugar."

The group returned to Tyler to record its follow-up, Rio Grande Mud, which was released in April 1972. Some fan favorites included here are "Just Got Paid" and "Bar-B-Q" as well as the lead single "Francine."

The third album, Tres Hombres, was the band's commercial breakthrough. Released in the summer of 1973, it was the trio's first Top 10 record and earned gold status thanks to hit "La Grange" and radio staples like "Jesus Just Left Chicago" and "Waitin' For The Bus," all of which still staples of the group's tour set list to this day.

Released in 1975, Fandango! was the band's second consecutive gold album and featured its first Top 40 single "Tush," which was spontaneously written in just a few minutes during sound check at a dirt-floored rodeo arena in Florence, Alabama.  The album is a combination of the live tracks that comprise the first side, recorded at The Warehouse in New Orleans, and studio recordings on Side 2. The album also included standouts like "Mexican Blackbird" and "Heard It On The X," the band's tribute to mega-wattage radio stations just south of the border.

Tejas became ZZ Top's third gold album when it was released in 1976. It hit the Top 20 on the album chart on the strength of tracks like "It's Only Love" and "Arrested For Driving While Blind."