Home Read Classic Album Review: Blue Öyster Cult | Tales of the Psychic Wars

Classic Album Review: Blue Öyster Cult | Tales of the Psychic Wars

The New York arena-metal gods double your pleasure with pair of ’80s concerts.


This came out in 2001 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


THE ARTIST: If you’ve never heard Don’t Fear the Reaper, the ’70s FM-rock staple from New York arena-metal outfit Blue Öyster Cult, congratulations on coming out of your decades-long coma.

THE ALBUM: Two CDs with separate but equal live shows from 1981 and 1983, when they were at their technical and commercial (if not creative) peak. THE MUSIC: Naturally, Reaper is on both discs, as are then-hits like Burnin’ For You and Joan Crawford, along with set-ending covers of Roadhouse Blues and Born To Be Wild. But each disc also has enough oldies — Hot Rails to Hell, 7 Screaming Diz-Busters, Cities on Flame with Rock & Roll — to satisfy choosier fans. THE QUALITY: Above-average. Both shows were recorded in stereo and nicely produced, though one gig fades in and out between songs, which sucks. THE LAST WORD: Given that BÖC have put out several live albums — including one in 1982 — most of these songs are already on the market. But if your life has been incomplete without a live version of Stairway To The Stars, your prayers have been answered.