Today in rock history: on this date in 1980, American shock rock band The Plasmatics made its live debut in London, England. The band, which was known for its explosive and over the top live show, was banned by the Greater London Council for exploding an automobile onstage, an antic the band had commonly incorporate into its live concerts.
Today in rock history: on this date in 1987, U2 scored its second no. 1 single from their multi-platinum album The Joshua Tree in the U.S. with “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”. The album’s first single, “With Or Without You” was the band’s first-ever chart topper in both America and Canada. On a related U2 note, on this date in 1961, The Edge (nee David Evans), the band’s lead guitarist and songwriting collaborator, was born in Barking, Essex, England.
Today in rock history: on this date in 1992, a violent riot took over Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Canada during what was supposed to be an enormous event pairing co-headliners Metallica and Guns N’ Roses. After Metallica lead singer James Hetfield was badly burned by pyrotechnics onstage, the band was forced to cut their set short. The night’s headliners, GnR also played an abbreviated set after lead singer Axl Rose complained of a sore throat after taking the stage more than two hours after Metallica’s set came to an early finish. At the announcement of the cancellation, angry fans rioted, overturned cars outside the venue, smashed windows and glass and caused over $400,000 in damage to the area.
Today in rock history: on this date in 1983, piano man Billy Joel released his ninth studio album, An Innocent Man. The album was an homage to the genres and styles Joel grew up listening to and was influenced by and proved to be one of his most successful releases of all time. The album stayed on Billboard’s album charts for more than two years in the U.S. and produced a slew of Top 10 singles including “Tell Her About It”, “Uptown Girl” and the title track. Additionally, four more singles were released from the record that were also successful and helped introduce Joel to a younger generation thanks to the heavy exposure he received on MTV with the many music videos that were made to accompany the album’s hits. The album was nominated for many Grammy awards but lost out on all of them to Michael Jackson’s undeniable blockbuster Thriller album.