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Eliminator

4.6 out of 5 stars 189 customer reviews

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Eliminator
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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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ELIMINATOR, with its churning guitars and synthesizer hooks, was on the album charts for over a year. The album and its accompanying videos were ubiquitous in 1983, on television ZZ Top was seen on MTV, St. Elsewhere, even on the Tonight Show. Certified at 10 million units by the RIAA. (2/01)

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ZZ Top's ninth studio album truly captured the mood of the times. Released as MTV was learning to crawl, the videos of the Lone Star trio's droll, masculine anthems were staples on the nascent music channel, making the world think that all the women in Texas looked like Jerry Hall--which wasn't far from the truth in 1983. And even if it wasn't completely accurate, listeners could at least visit a world where both cars and woman were fast and available. Billy Gibbons's roaring guitar licks streaked across songs with the speed of a young Hendrix. Even though the lyrics are often ham-fisted, all is forgiven for the pleasure of just letting the ZZ Top locomotive mow you down. While "Gimme All Your Loving," "Legs," and the satirically dynamic "Sharp Dressed Man" ruled the airwaves, the real gems here are the thundering "I've Got the Six" and the equally bombastic "Bad Girl," which showcase's Dusty Hill's heart-stopping drumming and Frank Beard's sturdy bass. Eliminator also marks the first time that the rough-and-tumble outfit turned to studio wizardry to goose up their meat-and-potatoes boogie. And while some early fans may have been dismayed, truth be told, their new studio sophistication added finesse and depth to ZZ Top. --Jaan Uhelszki
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Warner Off Roster
  • ASIN: B000002KYR
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (189 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,282 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Mark Barry TOP 500 REVIEWER on September 16, 2008
Format: Audio CD
Released on LP and Cassette in March 1983 on Warner Brothers, the blues boogie of "Eliminator" was an absolute phenomenon for the Texas trio ZZ Top.

They'd been bubbling under for years - "La Grange" in 1973, "Tush" in 1975 - and a minor hit with "I Thank You" in 1980. But none of it even remotely indicated what would happen in 1983 and 1984. "Eliminator" - one of the best boogie albums ever made - changed everything for them and us - it was little short of absolute global domination.

It was a combination of things - the umpteen tracks that were all single/radio friendly hits, the emergence of rotation MTV, the videos with leggy sexy babes - the fabulous 1933 coupe car - the ZZ TOP keyring flying through the air to the hapless buck trying to be a 'sharp dressed man' - the image of dusty dudes with beards - all of it combined in one heady mix to produce domestic sales in the USA topping 10 million with the same number estimated for the rest of the world. And if you take into account second-hand sales since that heady time 25 years ago and an early issue on CD, you're looking at a "Rumours", a "Purple Rain" and a "Thriller". This September 2008 (delayed release) has it good points and bad though...
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Format: Audio CD
"Eliminator" introduced the world to one of rock's most unique sounds from one of rock's most unique bands, ZZ Top. Past albums like "Tres Hombres" or "Deguello" had firmly established the band as a major draw, but it was with this 1983 album that the band first used an appealing blend of technology that was perfectly topped onto their trademark R&B/Delta blues roots.
The vocals and bass of Dusty Hill are as rough as the Texas sand, matched only by that of Billy Gibbons (who was a favorite guitarist of Jimi Hendrix), backboned by Frank Beard's disciplined drumming. All of this makes for a tightly wound musicianship that never suffers from "Eliminator"'s synthesized element. The album spawned several hits, notably 'Legs,' 'Sharp Dressed Man,' and 'Gimme All Your Lovin'. 'Got Me Under Pressure' is just as legendary, being an enduring ZZ Top favorite. The one-of-a-kind 'Thug' meanwhile is a darker tale, and features an incredinbly funky bass texture, while the likes of 'TV Dinners' and the incredibly eye-roll inducing 'I Got the Six' are somewhat less serious, but just as memorable. 'I Need You Tonight' however is surprisingly sympathetic and features some of Gibbons' best guitar work.
Although "Eliminator" became one the 80s most recognizable efforts, it finally gave ZZ Top the worldwide success they'd deserved since the early 70s. It is very much a male-ego album, containing the brilliant arrogance and flashiness that made ZZ Top so great in the first place.
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Format: Audio CD
Eliminator(1983). ZZ Top's Ninth Album.

In 1983, ZZ Top was beginning to slide back into mainstream popularity, as their previous albums, 'Deguello' and 'Tejas', had both gone platinum. When 'Eliminator' arrived, the album instantly rocketed to the top of the charts, thanks to the massively popular music videos "Legs" and "Sharp Dressed Man". Thanks to MTV, 'Eliminator' became ZZ Top's best-selling album, and it remains a rock classic to this day. To this day, "Gimme All Your Lovin", "Got Me Under Pressure", "Sharp Dressed Man", "I Need You Tonight", and "Legs" are all rotated constantly on the radio. So, do I think this album lives up to the hype? Read on to find out!

After 'Eliminator', ZZ Top became less and less of a rock band and more of a pop band, but here they managed to create the perfect balance. ZZ Top made an album that still retained the bluesy, gritty rock sound that they're known for, but managed to appeal to almost everybody. ZZ Top is a very percussive band, and Frank Beard's drumming is truly amazing here. On almost every song, I found myself tapping my feet to the beat... truly, he did an amazing job here. Billy Gibbons guitar work here is spectacular! He can make catchy power chords one second, and rip out a bluesy solo the next. He truly is a great rock n' roll guitarist.

From the dirty, boozy rock of "Gimme All Your Lovin" and "Legs" to the blues of "I Got The Six" and "TV Dinners", ZZ Top kept me interested. While all the hits are instant classics, "Sharp Dressed Man" is the absolute best ZZ Top song, basically defining and rewriting the definition of "cool". "I Need You Tonight" is ZZ Top's strongest ballad, a percussive, guitar-laden classic that never gets boring, unlike some of their later material.
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