By the early 1970s, Elvis Presley, the undisputed King of Rock and Roll, had already cemented his place in music history. His electrifying performances and genre-bending hits had revolutionized popular music, but his sound had softened in recent years. Enter Burning Love, a 1972 single that reignited the flames of rock and roll within Presley and showcased his enduring ability to captivate audiences.

Composed by songwriter Dennis Linde, Burning Love was a departure from Presley’s recent output. While many of his recordings of the time leaned towards soulful ballads and gospel-tinged numbers, Burning Love pulsed with a raw and primal energy reminiscent of his early rock and roll days. Linde, a rising artist himself, initially recorded a demo of the song, but producer Felton Jarvis recognized its potential for Presley and brought it to the King during a recording session.

Burning Love stands out for its driving rhythm section and electrifying guitar work. The opening electric guitar riff, overdubbed by Linde himself, sets the tone for the song’s infectious energy. The powerful drums and pulsating bass create a dynamic backdrop for Presley’s dynamic vocals. Gone is the crooning tenderness of his recent ballads; here, Presley unleashes a raw and passionate delivery. Lines like “Your kisses lift me higher / Like a sweet song of a choir” and “You’re a flame that burns, burns, burns” capture the intensity of a burning love, both exhilarating and consuming.

Burning Love was a critical and commercial success. The song reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1972, marking Presley’s highest-charting single since 1965. This resurgence in popularity solidified his status as a musical force to be reckoned with, even as he continued to explore different musical avenues. Burning Love also served as a reminder of Presley’s electrifying stage presence. Live performances of the song were infused with his signature charisma and swagger, igniting audiences with his renewed rock and roll spirit.

Burning Love remains a testament to Presley’s artistic versatility and enduring appeal. The song stands as a bridge between his rock and roll roots and his later explorations of soul and gospel. It’s a reminder that the King’s flame, while flickering at times, never truly extinguished. Burning Love continues to ignite audiences today, showcasing the raw energy and undeniable charisma that made Elvis Presley a rock and roll legend.