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Articles Home » 1978 Articles » Aerosmith - 1978 Live Bootleg
Aerosmith - 1978 Live Bootleg

ARTIST: Aerosmith
ALBUM: Live Bootleg
SERIAL: PC2 35564
YEAR: 1978
CD REISSUE: Reissue List..


LINEUP: Steven Tyler - vocals * Joe Perry - guitars * Brad Whitford - guitars * Brad Hamilton - bass * Joey Kramer - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Back In The Saddle * 02 Sweet Emotion * 03 Lord Of The Thighs * 04 Toys In The Attic * 05 Last Child * 06 Come Together * 07 Walk This Way * 08 Sick As A Dog * 09 Dream On * 10 Chip Away The Stone * 11 Sight For Sore Eyes * 12 Mama Kin * 13 S.O.S * 14 I Ain't Got You * 15 Mother Popcorn - Draw The Line * 16 Train Kept A Rollin'


October 1978 saw the release of the first Aerosmith live album. The difference between this set and other live albums of the time - 'Live Bootleg' is pretty raw and by the band's own admission, is a warts and all edition of their live capacity. Certainly, the material here hasn't been doctored in any way, like some live albums from the same era. Critically, Rolling Stone magazine was less than flattering in their original January 1979 review of the album. The writer - Tom Carson, probably didn't get the point that Joe Perry made about not wanting Aerosmith to have a 'perfect' sounding live album. Mind you, Carson probably didn't have the benefit of hindsight, considering he was operating in the pre-Internet era. Perry, Tyler and co definitely delivered a rowdy untouched live set that brings to life what it must have been like at an Aerosmith gig during 1977 and 1978. Sure, the tempo and time changes are out of whack right across the album, but no band is perfect on the night, and coupled with late nights, women, booze and drugs and long stints on the road, I'm sure any band would be in the same boat.

The Songs
Still, it's great to hear some of the Aerosmith classics get an airing. 'Sweet Emotion', 'Walk This Way', 'Toys In The Attic', Dream On' and 'Draw The Line' (the latter is actually hidden track within track 15 'Mother Popcorn') are all given the low-brow treatment, though in saying that, the band members, producer Jack Douglas and executive producers David Krebs and Steve Leber did have some say in how the material was to be assembled. 'Walk This Way' was given the vocoder treatment, obviously stolen from the Peter Frampton ideas department. A cover of The Beatles 'Come Together' is a given the blues rock treatment. Aerosmith had undertaken various covers on their studio albums previously (a la 'Walkin' The Dog' and 'Milk Cow Blues'), so it wasn't unexpected to see a couple on this set. The odd song selection is an April 1973 live performance of 'I Ain't Got You' recorded a couple of months after their 1973 debut (released January 1973). it's very different to what you'd expect.

In Summary
The American public were still on Aerosmith's side during 1978 and into 1979, the album reaching #13 in the Billboard charts. However, the line was soon to be drawn, with the departure of Joe Perry, who did actually record some parts for the next studio album, 1979's 'Night In The Ruts', but he quit the band to return to Boston, and thus assemble the Joe Perry Project. Is it a classic live album in the conventional sense? Probably not. There are far too many imperfections for it to be considered as such. Still, it remains an interesting chapter of Aerosmith's legacy even if long-time fans can't quite make up their minds about it. [word count 486]

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#1 | reyno-roxx on March 06 2016 13:06:05
I find radio broadcasts I had on tape offered a better experience than this album, but there are some great tracks on here so always worth acquiring if you have never owned it.
#2 | Nick C on March 06 2016 14:15:43
I love it...definitely one of my fave live albums.
#3 | spawn71 on March 06 2016 17:26:03
I'm a big fan of the classic Aerosmith from the '70s, so for me this is THE classic live album of this great band, a must have!
#4 | Eric on March 06 2016 22:29:44
I remember my little brother bought this when it came out and even then I thought Aerosmith sounded terrible here. Give me 'Draw The Line' and that's enough Aerosmith for me.
#5 | david on March 07 2016 02:45:15
I have to agree with Dave, I have a radio broadcast live in Boston 1978, which far outshines the offical live bootleg release. Hard to think that they were imploding at the time of recording as they were on fire in Boston that night.
#6 | Explorer on March 07 2016 18:20:00
Raw in the extreme.
Awesome in the extreme.
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