|Heart Jupiter's Darling||Soverign Artists|
This is one of those releases that will divide fans into two opposing camps – just as Heart's history has also been divided in two. There's the classic rock / Zeppelin influenced Heart of the 70's, then there was the stadium rock Heart that found the band on top of the charts for several years.|
The Wilson sisters had a definite blueprint for this release and credit to them; as they have executed that plan with precision. This plan however, was for a return to the band's early sound of the 70's – back to their roots - mirroring the sound of their earliest albums such as Dog & Butterfly, Little Queen and Dreamboat Annie. All the information leading to the run up of the release of this album suggested this would be a return to that style and Heart deliver on that promise.
That however leaves fans of the other Heart era out in the cold. The more acclaimed Heart stems from the 70's, however; the most recognized Heart comes from their stadium rock era of the mid-late 80's and early 90's. Chart topping albums such as Heart, Bad Animals and Brigade saw them selling far more units than ever before and reaching a far bigger audience thanks to mega-hits like the These Dreams, What About Love, Never, Alone and also the utterly horrid All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You.
I fall into the category of stadium rock fan. I still rate 1985's Heart as an all time classic and still enjoy Brigade and Bad Animals.
From there the album quality certainly become less consistent, but each release from Brigade and the side-project Lovemongers onwards saw the gals moving in a circular path back to their Zeppelin styled beginnings – fighting to throw off the super-ballad tag attached to them after the success of a couple of those overtly syrupy ballads.
And that's where we stand with Jupiter's Darling – the perfect album for fans of the earliest days of Heart and those with a heartfelt passion for the 70's and classic rock in general.
This album is perfectly recorded, performed and executed. You really can't fault the delivery, or the purpose.
But as a fan of their fired up anthemic AOR days, I can't help but feel this album isn't for me. I found it a little dull overall and found my mind continuously wavering after reaching the midway point of the album. At 16 tracks I believe the album is too long, but after several years waiting, die-hard fans won't be as distracted.
Musically the album moves between guitar driven 70's rockers and stripped back acoustic numbers. Both with varying pace. There are a few uptempo stompers, but several more mid-tempo numbers and the acoustic tracks are largely very laid back. For example the last 4 tracks of the album are all acoustic. There are at least 5 others on the album leaving about 5 or 6 Zeppelinesque rockers to be placed between them.
There are several fine songs – No Other Love, Things, Make Me and Enough are all sweet tracks. Funnily enough, in this instance, it's the rockers that fail to capture my attention.
A little too laid back in places, with not enough spark in the harder rockers, but without a doubt, the band remains tight musically.
include("f-review.p3"); retrieve("heart-jd",0,1); ?>