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Heaven Tonight is Cheap Trick's third album, released in 1978. The album was remastered and released with bonus tracks on Sony's Epic/Legacy imprint in 1998. The album cover features lead singer Robin Zander and bassist Tom Petersson.


Heaven Tonight is considered Cheap Trick's best album by many fans and critics. While their debut album Cheap Trick showed the band's darker, rawer side and In Color showed their lighter, poppier side, Heaven Tonight combined both elements to produce a hook-filled pop-rock album with an attitude. Popular songs from this album include the anthemic "Surrender", "Auf Wiedersehen", the title track, and a cover of The Move's "California Man".

Heaven Tonight is also known as the first album ever recorded with a 12-string electric bass.

Track listing

All songs written by Rick Nielsen, except where noted.
  1. "Surrender" – 4:16
  2. "On Top of the World" – 4:01
  3. "California Man" (Roy Wood) – 3:44
  4. "High Roller" (Rick Nielsen, Tom Petersson, Robin Zander) – 3:58
  5. "Auf Wiedersehen" (Nielsen, Petersson) – 3:42
  6. "Takin' Me Back" – 4:52
  7. "On the Radio" – 4:33
  8. "Heaven Tonight" (Nielsen, Petersson) – 5:25
  9. "Stiff Competition" – 3:40
  10. "How Are You?" (Nielsen, Petersson) – 4:21
  11. "Oh Claire" (Bun E. Carlos, Nielsen, Petersson, Zander) – 1:10

Bonus tracks (1998 Reissue)

  1. "Stiff Competition" (Outtake) – 4:03
  2. "Surrender" (Outtake) – 4:52

Singles (Side A/Side B)

  • (1978) "Surrender/Auf Wiedersehen" - #62 US
  • (1978) "California Man/Stiff Competition"
  • (1978) "California Man/I Want You To Want Me (Live version from AT BUDOKAN)"


Additional personnel

Background information

This was the second Cheap Trick album to feature Robin Zander and Tom Petersson on the front cover and Bun E. Carlos and Rick Nielsen on the back. While the front cover has Zander and Petersson standing in front of a nondescript background, the back cover reveals that they are standing inside a public restroom where Nielsen is brushing his teeth and Carlos is fixing his tie in the mirror. Nielsen has a cassette copy of the band's previous album, In Color sticking out of his back pocket.

"Surrender" was the only song from this album released on the original version of the 1979 live album At Budokan. On the 1998 reissue At Budokan: The Complete Concert, three additional songs from this album were included - "Auf Wiedersehen", "High Roller" and "California Man".

"Oh Claire" is a one-minute live jam with "Oh, Konnichiwa" as the only lyrics. The title is a pun on Eau Clairemarker, Wisconsinmarker, where the band used to play frequently in their pre-stardom days. Cheap Trick wrote a similarly titled song, "O Claire," for their 2006 album Rockford.

"Surrender" is featured as a playable song on the video game Guitar Hero II.


Year Chart Position
1978 Billboard 200 48
Year Single Chart Position
1978 "Surrender" Billboard Hot 100 62


Organization Level Date
RIAA – USA Gold 16 January 1979
RIAA – USA Platinum 10 February 1995


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