Know going in that the 3CD/1DVD Strange Euphoria, the first career spanning, multi-disc anthology of the Wilson siblings, is thankfully not another run of the mill, hit-demo-hit-rarity-hit-live-track-demo-hit affair. With almost two dozen hit singles nowhere in sight or within ear shot, Ann and Nancy—the brain, heart, and soul of Heart—set out to tell their musical story, which happens to include Heart.
Though I admit to being a bit peeved that Mistral Wind from 78's million-selling Dog and Butterfly isn't here in any form, the Magic Man and Crazy On You demos are and that is a real good thing, for they define the mystical, earthy—dare-I-say—feminine romanticism and how effortlessly they fused it with testosterone fueled rhythms to create a rock milieu all their own—but only when they wanted to. Derided by fans in the 80s as MTV sell-outs, mocked as a Led Zep rip in the 70s, all-but-forgotten in the 90s and most of whatever decade preceded 2012, Strange Euphoria never apologizes. From the 1969 single Through Eyes and Glass through the Lovemongers' Sand it's their story told their way and any Heart fan—novice to hard core completist—had better listen up. Sure there's a clunker or two, there would have to be. But the sexy powerhouse Any Woman's Blues with the Seattle Blues Revue Horns, the crunchy, grungy Love or Madness, the jamming City's Burning, the kick ass Even It Up, Love Alive, and a myriad of other great tracks far, far, exceed those clunkers.
The DVD, The Second Ending filmed before a small KWSU-TV audience in 1976 thrills us old timers (how fondly I recall those two shows at NY's legendary Academy of Music) and will inform newbies as to why Heart still holds a revered place in the collective rock 'n' roll mind. The original line-up gives it all they got. Includes Heartless, Silver Wheels, Crazy On You, Magic Man and nine others.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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