Happy Anniversary: The Stranglers, No More Heroes
38 years ago today, The Stranglers released their sophomore effort, an album which built on the success of the band's debut album and provided the gentlemen from Guildford with two more top-10 singles to add to their collection.
A bit older than the other bands within the punk movement, The Stranglers were often given the fisheye by the critics for a rather ridiculous reason: they were intelligent and musically capable. Fortunately, that didn't stop listeners from latching onto “Peaches,” the second single released from the band's debut album, Rattus Norvegicus, and sending it into the UK top 10. Building on that success, No More Heroes captured people's attention first with the double A-side of “Something's Better Change” and “Straighten Out, “ which hit #9, and then with the title track, which climbed to #8. Funnily enough, “Something Better Change” was actually a leftover from the Ratticus Norvegicus sessions. That's right: in '77, even The Stranglers' leftovers were going top-10!
To be sure, No More Heroes was about the farthest thing from a sophomore slump that The Stranglers could've come up with. In fact, if you buy into John Dougan's review over at AllMusic.com, it might even be the best album the band ever released, since he argues that “the ferocity and anger that suffuses this record would never be repeated.” There's certainly merit to his theory: even though we've always been pretty partial to their Aural Sculpture album, we'd be the first to admit that it's not nearly as ass-kicking an affair as No More Heroes.