[Review] Aerosmith: Get Your Wings (1974)

A solid record, but the real treasures were waiting to be discovered in the attic.

Kronomyth 2.0: Lewd zeppelin.

In reading reviews of this album, you’re likely to encounter the word “greasy” more than once. It’s an accurate description of the way the music feels and the way it makes you feel. Steven Tyler’s distinctive, raspy voice and lascivious lyrics (Lord of the Thighs, Pandora’s Box) are a match made in rock and roll heaven (or Hell to the rest of you). The musicianship of the band is a mesmerizing combination of blunt force and technical agility. Aerosmith’s second album may be greasy, but it runs like a well-oiled machine.

What Get Your Wings doesn’t have is a hit. Same Old Song and Dance is the closest thing to a standout track, and Train Kept a Rollin’ totally rocks. The rest of the album is good, but nothing on here is as polished as “Dream On” or as electrifying as “Walk This Way.” Of course, that’s only my opinion, and I wouldn’t call myself a hardcore Aerosmith fan (I found their music unlistenable after Live Bootleg). If I regard this as the least impressive of their first five albums, it’s like saying Presence is my least favorite Led Zeppelin album. In other words, it’s still pretty awesome.

This album is also notable as the first to feature producer Jack Douglas, who would take Aerosmith’s music to new heights of success. Here, however, the band is still stuck between hard blues rock and fantasy. “Spaced” and Seasons of Wither invoke the archetypes of science fiction and sorcery. “Same Old Song and Dance” and “Pandora’s Box” prominently feature horns. Much of the charm of Get Your Wings is that you don’t know what’s coming next. Conversely, its undoing is that the big hit single you’re waiting for never arrives.

Original elpee version

A1. Same Old Song and Dance (Steven Tyler/Joe Perry) (3:53)
A2. Lord of the Thighs (Steven Tyler) (4:15)
A3. Spaced (Steven Tyler/Joe Perry) (4:21)
A4. Woman of the World (Steven Tyler/Darren Solomon) (5:51)
B1. S.O.S. (Too Bad) (Steven Tyler) (2:50)
B2. Train Kept a Rollin’ (Tiny Bradshaw/Lois Mann/Howard Kay) (6:05)
B3. Seasons of Wither (Steven Tyler) (5:07)
B4. Pandora’s Box (Steve Tyler/Joey Kramer) (5:42)

Original 8-track version
A1. Same Old Song and Dance
A2. Pandora’s Box
B1. Train Kept a Rollin’
B2. Seasons of Wither (part 1)
C1. Seasons of Wither (conclusion)
C2. S.O.S. (Too Bad)
C3. Spaced
C4. Lord of the Thighs (part 1)
D1. Lord of the Thighs (conclusion)
D2. Woman of the World

The Players

Tom Hamilton (electric bass), Joey Kramer (drums and percussion), Joe Perry (electric, 12 string, slide and acoustic guitars), Steven Tyler (lead vocals, harmonica, piano, acoustic guitar), Brad Whitford (electric guitars) with Michael Brecker (tenor sax on A1/B4), Randy Brecker (trumpet on A1), Stan Bronstein (baritone sax on A1/B4), Ray Colcord (piano on A3), Jon Pearson (trombone on A1). Produced by Jack Douglas and Ray Colcord; engineered by Jay Messina, Jack Douglas and Rod O’Brien; executive producer: Bob Ezrin.

The Plastic

Released on elpee on March 1, 1974 in the US (Columbia, KC 32847) and the UK (CBS, 80015). Reached #74 on the US charts (RIAA-certified 3x platinum record).

  1. Re-issued on elpee in 1975 in Japan (Sony, 25AP-1212).
  2. Re-issued on elpee, cassette and 8-track in 1976 in the US (Columbia, PC/PCT/PCA 32847).
  3. Re-issued on elpee and 8-track in 1977 in the US (Columbia, JC/JCA 32847).
  4. Re-issued on cassette in the US (Columbia, PCT 32847) [with barcode].
  5. Re-issued on compact disc in 1993 in Brazil (CBS, 2057361).
  6. Re-released on 20-bit remastered compact disc and cassette in August 1993 in the US (Columbia, CK/CT 57361).
  7. Re-issued on 20-bit remastered compact disc on January 21, 1994 in Japan (Sony, SRCS-6952).
  8. Re-packaged with Aerosmith and Toys in the Attic on 3CD set in 1998 in the US (Columbia, 65600-2).
  9. Re-issued on compact disc in 2003 in Germany (CBS, 474963).

1 thought on “[Review] Aerosmith: Get Your Wings (1974)

  1. Spot on! I agree with every observation you made about this album. No argument here. But t find myself playing “Get Your Wings” far more than some of the others. “Dream On” included. Whaddygonnado? Rock on and keep’em comin’. ~peace casey

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