The little band from Texas is still larger than life on stage
Last night fans gathered at Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA to watch iconic rock trio ZZ Top. After having to cancel their headlining appearance last summer due to illness, The Little Ol’ Band from Texas returned as promised and delivered a solid night of southern rock infused with some new wave stylings.
They band is still touring in support of their latest effort La Futura, which peaked at #6 on the Billboard Top 200 back in 2012. Although the record is a few years old now, the band has obviously built up a massive catalog of hits and fan favorites over their 40-year career. And despite getting older, ZZ Top showed no signs of slowing down with their hefty 18-song set on the Sands Steel Stage.
They got off to a running start with “Got Me Under Pressure,” and immediately launched into their heavy blues double-track “Waitin’ For The Bus/Jesus Just Left Chicago.” Other highlights included “Gimmie All Your Lovin’,” “I’m Bad, “I’m Nationwide,” “My Head’s In Mississippi,” “Sharp Dressed Man,” the seminal “Cheap Sunglasses,” and many more. They threw in a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady” as well. As not to be some washed-up act from yesteryear relying on their old hits, ZZ Top played three tracks from their latest La Futura – “Chartreuse,” “Flyin’ High,” and the album’s lead single “I Gotsta Get Paid.”
The band returned for an encore at the audiences’ insistence. They cranked out classic mega-hits “La Grange” and “Tush,” and the crowd went wild (as if they hadn’t been for the last hour and a half.) They finally closed the curtain with a second encore of “Sixteen Tons” – a Merle Travis cover. Blues bars and badass guitars, ZZ Top still gots it.
ZZ Top have been rocking strong for over 40 years together. The band formed in Houston, TX in 1969 and released their debut album in 1971. To date, the band has released 15 studio albums that have produced countless hit rock anthems.
From 1983-1990, ZZ Top enjoyed their greatest commercial success, infusing elements of new wave, punk, and synth-pop into their bluesy riff-rock. The band released three albums in this span – Eliminator, Afterburner, and Recycler – all of which debuted in the Top 10 on the Billboard Top 200.
The band’s music videos for “Legs”, “Rough Boy”, and“Sharp Dressed Man” all garnered MTV Video Music Awards for the band. With 13 multi-platinum albums, and 1 diamond album, ZZ Top have sold over 25 million albums sold in the U.S. alone. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.
LIVE GALLERY: ZZ Top at Musikfest 2015