Heart – Beautiful Broken
2016, Concord Records
- Beautiful Broken
- Sweet Darlin’
- I Jump
- Johnny Moon
- City’s Burning
- Down On Me
- One Word
- Language of Love
Ann Wilson – Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals
Nancy Wilson – Guitar, Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals
Craig Bartock – Guitar
Dan Rothchild – Bass, Moog bass, Hammond B3
Ben Smith – Drums
Chris Joyner – Keyboard
James Hetfield – Lead Vocals
Produced by Dan Rothchild & Nancy Wilson
I’m slightly disappointed with the very idea of this album. Beautiful Broken is the sixteenth album from Heart, but not so fast — 8 of the 10 songs are re-recordings. For whatever reason, Ann & Nancy Wilson felt the need to revisit their catalog and offer up new versions of old songs. At least they didn’t go the obvious route and re-record their biggest hits, so I have to give them credit for that.
But why re-record a bonus track from the last album and make it the title track to this one? I dunno, I don’t want to be negative, but… it all just seems a little lazy to me. “Beautiful Broken” was previously a Best Buy bonus track on Fanatic. What’s different about this “new” version is that it now features Metallica’s James Hetfield on vocals. Now, it’s actually a decent song, as I said, but it’s inclusion make the band seem tired.
“Two” is a track that was originally a demo by the R&B artist Ne-Yo of all people before Ann got her hands on it. The only completely new and original track is “I Jump”, which shows just how good Ann & Nancy can still be. Of course, it continues their Led Zeppelin influence and has a “Kashmir” vibe, but it’s a fantastic song.
The rest of the songs are primarily pulled from the band’s first three releases in the ’80s: Bebe Le Strange, Passionworks, and Private Audition while “Heaven” is culled from 2003’s Alive in Seattle. It’s not much of a surprise that Heart would want to revisit tracks from the 1980s. The sisters have often complained and acted embarrassed by how their records were produced in the ’80s.
I guess if you’re a hardcore Heart fan, you might be interested in hearing what’s been done with older material, but to me, this album is a bit of a throwaway.
Highlights: “Beautiful Broken”, “I Jump”, “Down On Me”