Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Heart - Passionworks
Side one starts off with “How Can I Refuse”. As the first single, it charted at number 44 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number 1 on the US Mainstream Rock chart. This up-tempo tune focuses on those strong feelings of infatuation that occur at the beginning of a new romantic relationship.
The percussion is the first thing that jumped out to me on “Blue Guitar”, a song about a young female musician discovering a new instrument. I really like the way Carmassi varied the beats and rhythms through out.
“Johnny Moon”, the B-side to the first single, is about a woman is in love with a guy who spends most of free time getting stoned.
“Sleep Alone”, while not a single, found some strong play on the US Mainstream Rock chart where it peaked at number 43. It has strong synthesizers and electronic drums, giving the whole thing the type of rock sound that became a staple in the 80’s.
“Together Now” was the B-side to the second single. The track starts out slow but then takes a harder turn halfway through.
Side two opens with “Allies”, a political focused anthem written by Jonathan Cain of Journey. As the second single, it stalled at number 83 on the US Billboard Hot 100.
“(Beat By) Jealousy” takes on the topic of domestic violence. I do like the quirky rhythm on this one as it twists and turns in dark corners before exploding about midway through.
“Heavy Heart”, full of despair and heartbreak, is next.
“Love Mistake” opens up a conversation between two close friends, one of whom still has very strong feelings for the other.
When words fail, Heart recommends we turn to the “Language of Love” to get our point across.
The album closes with “Ambush”, a mix of funk and rock with a generous helping of those electric drum beats too.
While I was familiar with Heart’s early years and later 80’s offerings, this was my first exposure to most of the tracks on Passionworks. By this point in 1983, I had shifted a good bit away from the standard rock acts to focus on dance music (the stuff I was hearing out at clubs on the weekends). I thought that the album was a good listen and that perhaps, with subsequent revisits, some of the tracks might be ones I would like to pick up at some point.
- For 1978’s Magazine, click here.
- For 1982’s Private Audition, click here.