Blue Öyster Cult: An Appreciation

Blue Öyster Cult: An Appreciation

A look at one of the best, most underrated bands of the 70's

Getting a major pop hit is a double-edged sword: on the one hand, it can really help to launch a band to even greater success; but, on the other hand, it can condemn a band to a limited audience. Not popular enough to have stadium concert success, they're also not obscure enough to be 'cool'. This fate is exactly what happened to Blue Oyster Cult, a proto-metal band who, in 1976, scored a huge hit with their single "(Don't Fear) the Reaper". While they did go on to get two more hits, "Godzilla" and "Burnin' for You", they've mostly been forgotten. But, if you go beyond those hits, you'll find an amazing band that deserved better.

Blue Oyster Cult's lineup throughout their recording career consisted of Joseph Bouchard on bass, his brother Albert on drums, Allen Lanier on keyboards and guitar, Buck Dharma on lead guitar and vocals, and Eric Bloom on rhythm guitar and lead vocals. They initially formed as Soft White Underbelly in the late 60's, during the period when psychedelic rock, reacting to the traumas of the time, had started morphing into heavy metal. And, when Blue Oyster Cult started recording in 1972, they were often billed as the American counterpart of Black Sabbath. In fact, their enigmatic symbol is said to represent the Mark of Kronos, a Greek God who had been the king of the Titans and the father of Zeus; it's also the alchemical symbol for lead, a "heavy metal". They were also the first act to add an unnecessary umlaut to their name.

Their first album, called Blue Oyster Cult, introduced the world to the band's mixture of boogie-inflected hard rock ("Stairway to the Stars"), classic heavy-metal riffing ("Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll"), and searing psychedelia ("Then Came the Last Days of May"), all tied together by the criminally underrated Buck Dharma's melodic leads and solos. By their third album, 1974's Secret Treaties, they had evolved their sound to include more synthesizers, giving them a kind of heavy progressive edge to their sound. The year after would see On Your Feet or on Your Knees, their first live album (and one of my personal favorites), and the only one to not feature "(Don't Fear) the Reaper" as it hadn't yet been written. That would come on 1976's Agents of Fortune, widely considered to represent the band at their height. Any one of these albums would make a great introduction to the band, but I recommend Secret Treaties. It offers a great look into their unique sound, featuring stand out tracks like "Dominance and Submission", "ME-262", and the crowd favorite, "Astronomy".

While Blue Oyster Cult may not have all their original members, they still tour with their original lead singer (Eric Bloom) and lead guitarist (Buck Dharma). Having seen them three times in the past few years, I can personally testify that they are still as tight and awesome as they always have been. Definitely worth a listen.

Cover Image Credit: Pinterest

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When You Give A Girl A Dad

You give her everything

They say that any male can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad. That dads are just the people that created the child, so to speak, but rather, dads raise their children to be the best they can be. Further, when you give a little girl a dad, you give her much more than a father; you give her the world in one man.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a rock.

Life is tough, and life is constantly changing directions and route. In a world that's never not moving, a girl needs something stable. She needs something that won't let her be alone; someone that's going to be there when life is going great, and someone who is going to be there for her when life is everything but ideal. Dads don't give up on this daughters, they never will.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a role model.

If we never had someone to look up to, we would never have someone to strive to be. When you give a little girl someone to look up to, you give her someone to be. We copy their mannerisms, we copy their habits, and we copy their work ethic. Little girls need someone to show them the world, so that they can create their own.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her the first boy she will ever love.

And I'm not really sure someone will ever be better than him either. He's the first guy to take your heart, and every person you love after him is just a comparison to his endless, unmatchable love. He shows you your worth, and he shows you what your should be treated like: a princess.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her someone to make proud.

After every softball game, soccer tournament, cheerleading competition, etc., you can find every little girl looking up to their dads for their approval. Later in life, they look to their dad with their grades, internships, and little accomplishments. Dads are the reason we try so hard to be the best we can be. Dads raised us to be the very best at whatever we chose to do, and they were there to support you through everything. They are the hardest critics, but they are always your biggest fans.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a credit card.

It's completely true. Dads are the reason we have the things we have, thank the Lord. He's the best to shop with too, since he usually remains outside the store the entire time till he is summoned in to forge the bill. All seriousness, they always give their little girls more than they give themselves, and that's something we love so much about you.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a shoulder to cry on.

When you fell down and cut yourself, your mom looked at you and told you to suck it up. But your dad, on the other hand, got down on the ground with you, and he let you cry. Then later on, when you made a mistake, or broke up with a boy, or just got sad, he was there to dry your tears and tell you everything was going to be okay, especially when you thought the world was crashing down. He will always be there to tell you everything is going to be okay, even when they don't know if everything is going to be okay. That's his job.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a lifelong best friend.

My dad was my first best friend, and he will be my last. He's stood by me when times got tough, he carried me when I just couldn't do it anymore, and he yelled at me when I deserved it; but the one thing he has never done was give up on me. He will always be the first person I tell good news to, and the last person I ever want to disappoint. He's everything I could ever want in a best friend and more.

Dads are something out of a fairytale. They are your prince charming, your knight in shinny amour, and your fairy godfather. Dads are the reasons we are the people we are today; something that a million "thank you"' will never be enough for.

Cover Image Credit: tristen duhon

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15 Thing Only Early 2000's Kids Will Understand

"Get connected for free, with education connection"


This is it early 2000's babies, a compilation finally made for you. This list is loaded with things that will make you swoon with nostalgia.

1. Not being accepted by the late 90's kids.


Contrary to what one may think, late 90's and early 00's kids had the same childhood, but whenever a 00's kid says they remember something on an "only 90's kids will understand" post they are ridiculed.

2. Fortune tellers.


Every day in elementary school you would whip one of these bad boys out of your desk, and proceed to tell all of your classmates what lifestyle they were going to live and who they were going to marry.


You could never read this book past 8 o'clock at night out of fear that your beloved pet rabbit would come after you.

4. Silly bands.

You vividly remember begging your parents to buy you $10 worth of cheap rubber bands that vaguely resembles the shape of an everyday object.

5. Parachutes.

The joy and excitement that washed over you whenever you saw the gym teacher pull out the huge rainbow parachute. The adrenaline that pumped through your veins whenever your gym teacher tells you the pull the chute under you and sit to make a huge "fort".

6. Putty Erasers

You always bought one whenever there was a school store.

7. iPod shuffle.

The smallest, least technological iPpd apple has made, made you the coolest kid at the bus stop.

8. "Education Connection"

You knew EVERY wood to the "Education Connection" commercials. Every. Single.Word.

9. " The Naked Brothers Band"

The "Naked Brothers Band" had a short run on Nickelodeon and wrote some absolute bangers including, "Crazy Car' and "I Don't Wanna Go To School"

10. Dance Dance Revolution

This one video game caused so many sibling, friend, and parent rivalries. This is also where you learned all of your super sick dance moves.

11. Tamagotchi

Going to school with fear of your Tamagotchi dying while you were away was your biggest worry.

12. Gym Scooters

You, or somebody you know most likely broke or jammed their finger on one of these bad boys, but it was worth it.

13. Scholastic book fairs

Begging your parents for money to buy a new book, and then actually spending it on pens, pencils, erasers, and posters.


Who knew that putting yogurt in a plastic tube made it taste so much better?

15. Slap Bracelets

Your school probably banned these for being "too dangerous".

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