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Agents of Fortune (Bonus Track Version)

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Editors’ Notes

With their fourth studio album Blue Oyster Cult updated and retooled their sound to better their chances at mainstream rock radio in the mid-70s. It worked, since the swirling mysteries (and cowbell) of “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” became an FM radio classic rock standard and tunes such as “This Ain’t the Summer of Love” and “E.T.I. (Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence)” became fan favorite live staples for decades to come. Allen Lanier’s keyboards that took on added presence on their previous album, the hardcore fan favorite Secret Treaties, are given even wider expansion here, often challenging the twin-guitar attack of Buck Dharma and Eric Bloom. However, Blue Oyster Cult were always a suspect hard rock group, less interested in bludgeoning their audience than seducing it with unusual wit, obscure concepts and mysterious symbolism. The band’s earlier boogie exercises have mostly dissipated. “Debbie Denise” is practically a lite-FM ballad about a rocker on the road and his discontented lady waiting at home. Emerging punk poetess Patti Smith (and Lanier’s girlfriend for a time) contributes lyrics and vocals to “The Revenge of Vera Gemini.” Demos (including one for “Reaper”) and an early version of “Fire of Unknown Origin” are added to the expanded edition.

Customer Reviews


This is a nice album that contains some of BOC's best songs.

Agents of Fortune

This was another resurgence of BOC. Don't listen to everyone who is gaga about Don't Fear the Reaper. E.T.I. is by far the best song on this album.


Great album is great. I think Blue Oyster Cult is a pretty cool guy. Eh makes you think and doesn't afraid of anything.


Formed: 1967 in Long Island, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Blue Öyster Cult was the thinking man's heavy metal group. Put together on a college campus by a couple of rock critics, it maintained a close relationship with a series of literary figures (often in the fields of science fiction and horror), including Eric Von Lustbader, Patti Smith, Michael Moorcock, and Stephen King, while turning out some of the more listenable metal music of the early and mid-'70s. The band that became Blue Öyster Cult was organized in 1967 at Stony Brook College on Long Island...
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