Chrome, Smoke & BBQ is a box set by American blues-rock band ZZ Top, released in 2003. This box set is notable for using the original mixes for all of the tracks from the band's first five albums for the first time on the CD format. This box set, and the companion release Rancho Texicano, are the only two CD releases which feature original mixes from ZZ Top's First Album, Rio Grande Mud, and Tejas, aside from 1977's The Best of ZZ Top which features two tracks from Rio Grande Mud and one track from First Album. Tres Hombres and Fandango! were reissued in their original mixes in 2006.
Assembled from various shows from various tours from around the world, 2016's Live: Greatest Hits from Around the World is billed as ZZ Top's first "full-length live album" – a matter of dispute considering how Eagle Rock released three CD/DVD/Blu-ray combo sets between 2008 and 2014. There is no visual component to Live: Greatest Hits from Around the World, which may be how it skates around the first live album distinction – if there's no video, this is a pure album – but the record mines a similar musical vein, collecting highlights from latter-day ZZ Top tours. During the 2000s and 2010s, ZZ Top released an excellent studio album called La Futura, but that's ignored here in favor for all the songs that are classic rock staples…
ZZ Top closed out their tenure with London Records in late 1977 with The Best of ZZ Top, a basic but terrific ten-song retrospective of highlights from their first five albums (well, four, actually, since the underwhelming Tejas is ignored).
Tres Hombres is the record that brought ZZ Top their first Top Ten record, making them stars in the process. It couldn't have happened to a better record. ZZ Top finally got their low-down, cheerfully sleazy blooze-n-boogie right on this, their third album. As their sound gelled, producer Bill Ham discovered how to record the trio so simply that they sound indestructible, and the group brought the best set of songs they'd ever have to the table.
Blessed with their first full-fledged hit album, ZZ Top followed it up with Fandango!, a record split between a side of live tracks and a side of new studio cuts. In a way, this might have made sense, since they were a kick-ass live band, and they do sound good here, but it's hard not to see this as a bit of a wasted opportunity in retrospect.