Remember (Walking In the Sand)
Three Mile Smile
Reefer Head Woman
Bone to Bone (Coney Island White Fish Boy)
Think About It
Aerosmith were falling apart. Substance abuse was taking it toll. Interpersonal relationships were disintegrating. Guitarist Joe Perry was already gone by the album’s release and fellow guitarist Brad Whitford would soon depart as well. Guitarists Richard Supa and Neil Thompson pick up the slack, and it’s a testament to just how skilled a band they were that even with all this difficulty, they were able to assemble an album as strong as 1979’s Night in the Ruts. The album lacks the diamond-hard precision of the band’s earlier works, favoring walls of massive overdubbed guitars to get its message across. This sonic bludgeoning adds heightened drama to the masterful opening cut (Aerosmith always knew how to make an entrance) and make “Chiquita” and “Cheese Cake” among the band’s densest hard rock. A cover of the Shangri-Las’ “Remember (Walking in the Sand)” allows singer Steven Tyler to sing to sweet desperation, while the Yardbirds’ “Think About It” again puts the guitarists into full-play. “Reefer Head Woman” is the closest the group had ever come to pure blues (and would remain so until their 2004 Honkin’ On Bobo release). “Mia,” a song for Tyler’s daughter, is another trip over to the piano for a sentimental closer (Tyler always knew how to make an exit).