Pretzel Logic wasn’t just Steely Dan’s first top 10 album, it was arguably their best album. In a ranking of their nine studio albums, Paste placed Pretzel Logic in the number two slot, only trailing 1973’s Countdown to Ecstasy. The 1974 album saw Steely Dan embracing their jazz sound—both musically and lyrically—more than they had before, and it included some of their most beloved songs like “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” and “Any Major Dude Will Tell You.”
Read: Ranking Steely Dan’s Nine Albums
Pretzel Logic was released on this day (Feb. 20) in 1974, and to celebrate the album’s anniversary—which Paste called a “fascinatingly unpredictable 33 minutes of music”—and what also would’ve been Walter Becker’s 70th birthday, we’re sharing Steely Dan concert audio from that same year at London’s Rainbow Theatre. The set featured songs like the Pretzel Logic title track and “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number,” plus Countdown to Ecstasy selections like “My Old School” and “The Boston Rag.” Listen to Steely Dan perform “Pretzel Logic” and “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” below.
Hear Steely Dan perform live in 1974 via the Paste vault.