Heatwave shows off some pretty nifty jazz chops in “Boogie Nights”’ intro, suggesting something akin to the fusion records that were charting with regularity in the mid Seventies. PSYCH! The band launches into a full-on disco/funk jam that you can’t help but dance to. “Boogie Nights” is interesting because it doesn’t really have a chorus, but there are a ton of little pieces that hook you in. It’s a testament to the songwriting genius of Rod Temperton.
Heatwave’s Too Hot To Handle album cover is so awesome. It was one of my favorites as a kid. The drawing of a record melting on a hot summer day is still pretty iconic. If I remember correctly, the inner sleeve had a snazzily written essay describing that the record was so hot it might actually for-real melt your turntable. I would totally blow that cover up and put it on my wall if I wasn’t so lazy. I was hoping that their episode of Unsung was available on YouTube, but it appears to have been taken down.
Heatwave was a star-crossed band for sure. One member got murdered just after they got their legs under them, another got stabbed by his girlfriend after a party and almost died, and then lead singer/founder Johnnie Wilder got into a car accident and was paralyzed from the chest down. All of this occurred before 1980. Craziness