Bad Reputation is Thin Lizzy’s eighth studio album, released in 1977. As the front cover suggests, most of the tracks feature only three-quarters of the band, with guitarist Brian Robertson only credited on three tracks. He had missed most of their earlier tour, following an injury sustained in a brawl, and this album turned out to be his last studio effort with Thin Lizzy.
“Teaming up with legendary producer Tony Visconti, Thin Lizzy managed to pull off a nifty trick of sounding leaner and tougher than they did on Johnny, yet they also had a broader sonic palette. Much of this is due, of course, to Visconti, who always had a flair for subtle dramatics that never called attention to themselves, and he puts this to use in dramatic effect here, to the extent that Lizzy sound stripped down to their bare bones, even when they have horns pushing them forward on “Dancing in the Moonlight” or when overdubbed vocals pile up on the title track. Of course, they were stripped down to a trio for most of this record: guitarist Brian Robertson (who’d injured his hand) had to sit out on most of the recording, but Scott Gorham’s double duty makes his absence unnoticeable. Plus, this is pure visceral rock & roll, the hardest and heaviest that Thin Lizzy ever made, living up to the promise of the title track. And, as always, a lot of this has to do with Phil Lynott’s writing, which is in top form whether he’s romanticizing “Soldiers of Fortune” or heading down the “Opium Trail.” It adds up to an album that rivals Jailbreak as their best studio album.”
My three favorite Lizzy albums are:
1. Bad Reputation
2. Johnny The Fox
It is strange to listen to these albums now, they are so mellow and soulful. We regarded them as hard rock records in the late 70s, but now I will describe them as Hard-rock/soul albums. And how great is Phil Lynott’s singing, he’s a great soul singer!
Dancing In The Moonlight (Live and Dangerous, DVD):
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