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November 8, 2016

Meat Loaf – Bat Out Of Hell (1977) – Lp

by Record Facts

Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday, September 27, 1947) better known by his stage name Meat Loaf is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record producer and actor. He is noted for the Bat Out of Hell trilogy of albums.

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Artist:  Meat Loaf
Title:  Bat Out Of Hell
Year:  1977
Format:  LP
Label:  Epic Records
Catalog# EPC 82419

Bat Out of Hell is the second album and major-label debut by American rock singer Meat Loaf, as well as being his first collaboration with composer Jim Steinman and producer Todd Rundgren, released in October 1977 on Cleveland International/Epic Records.

There is no other album like Bat Out of Hell, unless you want to count the sequel. This is Grand Guignol pop — epic, gothic, operatic, and silly, and it’s appealing because of all of this. Jim Steinman was a composer without peer, simply because nobody else wanted to make mini-epics like this. And there never could have been a singer more suited for his compositions than Meat Loaf, a singer partial to bombast, albeit shaded bombast. The compositions are staggeringly ridiculous, yet Meat Loaf finds the emotional core in each song, bringing true heartbreak to “Two out of Three Ain’t Bad” and sly humor to “Paradise by the Dashboard Light.” There’s no discounting the production of Todd Rundgren, either, who gives Steinman‘s self-styled grandiosity a production that’s staggeringly big but never overwhelming and always alluring. While the sentiments are deliberately adolescent and filled with jokes and exaggerated clichés, there’s real (albeit silly) wit behind these compositions, not just in the lyrics but in the music, which is a savvy blend of oldies pastiche, show tunes, prog rock, Springsteen-esque narratives, and blistering hard rock (thereby sounding a bit like an extension of Rocky Horror Picture Show, which brought Meat Loaf to the national stage). It may be easy to dismiss this as ridiculous, but there’s real style and craft here and its kitsch is intentional. It may elevate adolescent passion to operatic dimensions, and that’s certainly silly, but it’s hard not to marvel at the skill behind this grandly silly, irresistible album.

It is one of the best-selling albums in the history of recorded music, having sold over 43 million copies worldwide. Rolling Stone magazine ranked it at number 343 on its list of the 500 greatest albums of all time in 2003.

 

Side one
1.  Bat Out of Hell  (9:56)
2.  You Took the Words Right out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night)  (5:04)
3.  Heaven Can Wait  (4:38)
4.  All Revved Up with No Place to Go  (4:19)

Side two
1.  Two out of Three Ain’t Bad  (5:23)
2.  Paradise by the Dashboard Light  (duet with Ellen Foley)  (8:28)
3.  For Crying Out Loud  (8:45)

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