The title of Aerosmith’s 1979 record Night in the Ruts was little more than a clever spooning to propose “right in the nuts.” It encapsulated the dire state of affairs for drug-afraid rockers whose underrated sixth LP was doomed.
The Boston quintet had been knocked out of its mid-’70s perch by the end of the span, hampered by rising substance despotism and fatigued by relentless touring in support of 1977’s underachieving. Draw the itinerary. This incessant touring software interrupted the sessions during Perplexity in the Roads, and Aerosmith’s performances became increasingly erratic as their drug use increased further.
The tension among Steven Tyler and Joe Perry was exacerbated by their tiredness and vice. After a disastrous argument onstage after a gig in Cleveland on July 28, 1979, tensions reached a peak, and the guitarist left the group. Jimmy Crespo, who was an actual part of the group from 1979 until 1984, took Perry’s place.
The commercial portrayal of Night in the Ruts mirrored the group’s fatigue. The record began at number 14 on the Billboard 200, but shortly lost popularity with critics and was lambasted. Their sole song, a cover of Shangri-Las’ “Remember (Walking in the Sand),” failed to chart at number 67.
Don’t worry, Night in the Ruts is beyond the categorical disaster some critics made it out to be. From the autobiographical rocker “No Surprise” to the sleazy, riff-riddled “Bone to Bone (Coney Island White Fish Boy),” the record features some of Aerosmith’s fiercest performances, harking back to their mid-’90s rocking days. 70. Toys in the attic and rocks. Still, the book was relegated to the pigsty of history when Aerosmith made its miraculous MTV-powered comeback in the late ’80s.
Watch the video below to learn more about Night in the Ruts, “Doomed to Fail?” video series dusting off ill-fated classic rock albums and determine if they’re hidden gems or better left forgotten.