Objects In The Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are

Album: Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell (1993)
Charted: 26 38
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  • With songs written by Jim Steinman, Meat Loaf released one of the biggest-selling albums in history with Bat Out of Hell in 1977. In 1993, he released the sequel, once again with songs by Steinman. "I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)" was the lead single and breakout hit, but the similarly grandiose "Objects In The Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are" also made an impact. According to Steinman, it was the last song written for the album and "gruesomely hard to write." He wrote on his website: "It's a very passionate song. It's really, I think maybe, the most passionate one on the record. I mean, I'm really proud of it because that's really one that goes over-the-top in the sense that it's got images - it has religious imagery of resurrection, it's got images of fertility and rebirth, it has really very good sexual images, images of cars - which I always like."
  • In the song, Meat Loaf sings about the death of his "best friend Kenny." The best clue to the identity of Kenny comes in the liner notes of the 1981 Meat Loaf album Dead Ringer, where Jim Steinman writes, "To the memory of Kenney Robb, a friend and real front-line warrior."
  • The title is a warning that appeared on the side rear-view mirrors of cars in the decades after they were first introduced - apparently many motorists had difficulty with the optics. Used as a metaphor, it means that vivid memories can distort time, making you feel like they weren't so long ago. It's not easy to let go of what you can't forget.
  • The album version runs 10:15, but the single was cut down to 5:54. Even at this abbreviated length, it was still the longest Top 40 hit of 1994. The version used in the video splits the difference, going 7:42.
  • Long song titles were a thing in the '90s. Other lengthy ones include "Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth With Money in My Hand" by Primitive Radio Gods, "Trippin' On A Hole In A Paper Heart" by Stone Temple Pilots, and "Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town" by Pearl Jam.
  • Like the Meal Loaf videos for "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)" and "Rock And Roll Dreams Come Through," this one was directed by Michael Bay, who worked on the Transformers movies. He even managed to get an explosion this one, showing Kenny dying in a fiery plane crash.
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