Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers – Refugee / Watch Video

 

 

Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker’s 15th studio release is a “return to form,” according to reviews.

Already selling more than 80 million total albums in a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame career, Tom Petty (along with his perennial band the Heartbreakers) is one of the best-selling artists of all time. But that’s no reason to hang up his hat, as the classic rock aficionado has just released his 15th studio album — and 13th with the Heartbreakers — Hypnotic Eye (Reprise).

Whatever the title may suggest, Hypnotic doesn’t focus on the Billboard‘s cover star‘s beliefs about transcendental meditation. Instead, Billboard.coms Kenneth Partridge is calling it a “return to form,” saying in his 85/100, track-by track review that: “In a sense, it’s where he’s always been.”

“Singing over punchy backings sure to get folks reminiscing about Damn the Torpedoes and Hard Promises, two of his early classics, Petty takes stock of his life, thumbs his nose at cops and parents, and decides he’s happy chasing his foolish rock ‘n’ roll dreams. He’s done some things he’s maybe not proud of (see: “Sins of My Youth”), but come out with his soul intact. At the very least, he’s not one of those unfeeling, self-oriented, materialistic ‘Shadow People’ he sniffs at in the final track,” says Partridge.

In his four-star review, Rolling Stones Jon Dolan agrees. “On Hypnotic Eye, the 63-year-old and his eternal Heartbreakers return to the scrappy heat of those early days with their toughest, most straight-up rocking record in many years, deepened by veteran perspective,” he says.

“The new album is a return to lucidity after the sometimes generic blues-rock and haphazard lyrics of Mojo,” says The New York TimesJon Pareles. “Nearly every song on Hypnotic Eye puts its main riff right up front, followed by Mr. Petty clearly staking out characters and situations. ‘American Dream Plan B’ opens the album with just a drumbeat and distorted, choppy guitar chords, with Mr. Petty soon arriving to yowl: ‘I’m gonna make my way through this world someday/I don’t care what nobody say.'”

Says The New York Daily News Jim Farber: “The album recalls the formal song structures, chiseled tunes and hard-rocking momentum of yore. It’s his catchiest, most sharply focused album in years.”

Hypnotic Eye is being talked about as a return to the sound of gumshoe Petty as heard on 1976’s Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and 1978’s You’re Gonna Get It! This is partly true,” says Consequences of Sound‘s Julian Ring in his more mixed review. “What keeps any song on Hypnotic Eye from matching “American Girl” or “The Wild One, Forever” is quality of songwriting, which shouldn’t necessarily come as a shocker. Classicism has no hand in it. Petty’s reached a point where he doesn’t need to worry about hits, no doubt a liberating position in which to create. But expectations are also lower, and in spots, it’s noticeable. Petty and his band have delivered a solid, but not wholly exceptional, batch of songs propelled by sharp lyrical themes and a clear vision. Ranked alongside the Heartbreakers’ back catalog, their 13th falls somewhere in the middle.”

STORY Tom Petty’s Billboard Cover: 5 Discoveries About the Rock Icon

“It won’t convert the unconvinced, but Petty sounds as inspired as ever,” says NMEs Mischa Pearlman, also giving Petty a mixed review.

“Though he has lived in California for decades, he remains a child of the South, and when his drawl breaks into a raspy growl, you can feel the pulse of a song rise, the anger bubbling to the surface,” says The Chicago Tribune‘s Greg Kot. “Petty stays contained, but there’s a sense that things could pop any second. It’s there in the diminished expectations outlined in ‘American Dream Plan B’ and the has-been’s lament ‘Forgotten Man.'”

And while “fans of Petty have a few stinkers to deal with in a 13-album stretch,” adds Kot, “the sun rises in the East, death and taxes will get you every time, and Tom Petty won’t let you down. It’s also really easy to take what he does, what he makes seem so effortless, for granted.”

 

Pearl Jam’s U.S. Tour Dates

Eddie Vedder - Frontman of Pearl Jam

Eddie Vedder – Frontman of Pearl Jam / Photo Jason Oxenham/Getty Images

Pearl Jam have announced a 12-city October U.S. tour, following a summer trek to Europe, that includes their appearance at Austin City Limits Music Festival. Tickets for the shows go on sale May 30th.

Last year, the group put out their 10th studio album, Lightning Bolt, which frontman Eddie Vedder kvelled about in an interview with Rolling Stone. “I say this in the least-competitive way possible, but we’re trying to make not just the best Pearl Jam record, but just the best record,” the singer said. “It’s about getting to the next level of communication, or just trying to crack a code into some higher plane of playing music.”

Outside of the world of Pearl Jam, the group’s guitarist Mike McCready wrote an article for Rolling Stone about how Kiss had inspired him growing up, as the makeup-faced hard rockers were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Moreover, he revealed that he wasn’t the only member of his band to garner inspiration from the group. “Pearl Jam sit down and have conversations about Kiss all the time on tour,” he wrote. “My band used to do ‘C’Mon and Love Me.’ Matt Cameron played in a Kiss tribute band when he was 14. They got so big around San Diego that they got a cease-and-desist order from Casablanca Records. Jeff Ament used to play ‘She’ in his band Deranged Diction. There’s a Kiss through-line to a lot of the music that came out of Seattle, and it hasn’t been talked about a lot.”

Via Rolling Stone Mag

Pearl Jam U.S. tour dates:
10/1 Cincinnati, OH – U.S. Bank Arena
10/3 St. Louis, MO – Scottrade Center
10/4 – 10/5 Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
10/8 Tulsa, OK – BOK Center
10/9 Lincoln, NE – Pinnacle Bank Arena
10/10 – 10/12 Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
10/14 Memphis, TN – FedEx Forum
10/16 Detroit, MI – Joe Louis Arena
10/17 Moline, IL – iWireless Center
10/19 St. Paul, NM – Xcel Energy Center
10/20 Milwaukee, WI – BMO Harris Bradley Center
10/22 Denver, CO – Pepsi Center

Watch: Pearl Jam Cover the Dead Boys With Joey Ramone

 
Via Rolling Stone
 

Pearl Jam have toured with a lot of amazing opening acts over the years, sharing the stage with Iggy Pop, Sleater-Kinney, the Buzzcocks, Cheap Trick and many, many more. But nothing is likely to top four American shows in September 1995, when the Ramones were on the bill. The punk icons were on a farewell tour that year, playing a career high 73 gigs. Their last gig together was September 17th at Tad Gormley Stadium in New Orleans.

During the encore, in a moment that Ramones super fan Eddie Vedder is likely to never forget, Joey Ramone came onstage and sang the Dead Boys classic “Sonic Reducer” with the band. This was obviously before the era of smartphones, but camcorders were rolling in the audience. Here’s the best available video, which was spliced together from two sources.

Despite pledging that they would break-up following their 1995 tour, the Ramones got a big money offer to headline Lollapalooza in the summer of 1996, so the tour kept going. They played their final show at the Palace in Hollywood, California. Eddie Vedder joined them for the final encore, a cover of “Anyway You Want It” by the Dave Clark Five.

Six years later, Eddie Vedder inducted the Ramones in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He spoke for 17 minutes. “They were armed with two-minute songs that they rattled off like machine gun fire,” he said. “It was enough to change the Earth’s revolution. Now it’s Disney kids singing songs written by old men and being marketed to six- and seven-year-olds, so some kind of change might have to happen again soon.”

Tragically, Joey Ramone wasn’t around to receive the honor. He passed away the previous April (Cancer claimed punk legend and Ramones founder). . Dee Dee Ramone died of a heroin overdose just three months later, and Jonny Ramone died of prostate cancer in 2004. Eddie Vedder spoke at his funeral.

With no support other than CBGB owner Hilly Kristal, the Ramones became the first of the New York punk rock and New Wave bands to land a major-label record deal. Their first four records, The Ramones, The Ramones Leave Home, and Road to Run are widely considered the blueprint for punk rock. The band’s legacy was further assured with its starring role in the Roger Corman cult-film, Rock and Roll High School in 1979. A year later the band wore their Sixties pop influences on their sleeves when they enlisted Phil Spector to produce their fifth studio album, End of the Century. The album featured a cover of the Ronettes’ “Baby I Love You,” their biggest hit in either the U.S. or the U.K.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2014 Induction Ceremony at Barclays Center

 

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Nirvana Reunite, Kiss Remain Civil at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Evening wraps with Lorde, Kim Gordon, St. Vincent and Joan Jett all fronting Nirvana

Prior to the performance, Nirvana was introduced by R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe, was was a close friend of frontman Kurt Cobain. “This is not just pop music, he said of the band. This is something much greater than that.” He continued, “Nirvana were artists in every sense of the word. Nirvana tapped into a voice that was yearning to be heard. Nirvana were kicking against the mainstream. They spoke truth and a lot of people listened.”

Grohl gave the first and longest of the acceptance speeches, using it to commemorate the four other drummers who played in the band, while also recognizing the D.C. punk band that inspired him as a musician. “For whatever reason, I got to be the luckiest person in the world,” he said.

Novoselic took time to remember Cobain.”I wish Kurt could be here,” he said. “His music meant so much to so many people.” He also thanked Sub Pop Records, the Melvins’ Buzz Osborne, and Steve Albini, among others.

Kurt Cobain’s mother spoke on her son’s behalf. “He would be so proud, he said he wouldn’t, but he would be,” she said.

Courtney Love provided the final remarks, saying, “I have a big speech but I’m not going to say it. I just wish Kurt could have been here.” She kept things civil, even giving a hug to Grohl.

Watch the full speech below.

 

 

It was exactly midnight when Joan Jett walked onstage with the surviving members of Nirvana and tore into the opening chords of “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” By that point, the capacity crowd at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center had witnessed a long evening full of miraculous moments only possible at the annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony: A beaming Peter Criss threw his arms around his supposed sworn enemy Paul Stanley during Kiss’ peaceful reunion, Cat Stevens led an arena full of Kiss and Nirvana fans through a sing-along rendition of “Peace Train,” Courtney Love embraced Dave Grohl in a huge bear hug after 20 years of nasty accusations and lawsuits and Bruce Springsteen played with two founding members of the E Street Band for the first time in 40 years.

But nothing could compare to the thrill of watching Joan Jett, Kim Gordon, St. Vincent and Lorde take turns fronting Nirvana. Dave Grohl, Pat Smear and Krist Novoselic hadn’t played a Kurt Cobain-penned song together in public since the frontman killed himself 20 years ago, and it’s quite easy to imagine they never will again. Jett kicked things off with a wild, thrashed-out “Smells Like Teen Spirit” that had men in tuxedos dancing on their chairs. Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon kept the energy high with a faithful rendition of “Aneurysm” and Annie Clark (St. Vincent) belted out “Lithium.” It wrapped up with Lorde’s gut-wrenching take on “All Apologies.” She was born two and a half years after Cobain died, but she somehow had the wisdom and confidence to deliver those agonizing lyrics.

The evening began a little after 7:00 PM with a speech by Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Chairman Jann Wenner. “We are thrilled to be here tonight in Brooklyn,” he said. “As Keith Richards has said so often, at this age we’re thrilled to be anywhere. We’re here to celebrate our youth, our music and that which keeps us forever young. Rock and roll offers hope and passion and joy and courage and love, a way to understand the world around us, and for so many of us, a way of life.”

Peter Asher handed out the first two awards of the night to Beatles manager Brian Epstein and Rolling Stones manager/producer Andrew Loog Oldham. “These are the first two managers ever inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” he said. “Each of them managed one of the most important ensembles in music history, let alone just rock and roll. And each of whom guided his band from anonymity to global stature, though in very different ways.” Epstein died in 1967 and Loog Oldham opted to skip the ceremony, so nobody was on hand to accept their awards.

Next up was Peter Gabriel, who delivered a hypnotic rendition of “Digging In The Dirt” before Chris Martin walked out to induct him. “He brings together sounds from all over the world,” said the Coldplay frontman. “At times it feels like he releases music at a snail’s pace. But one looks back now and sees this amazing cathedral of song. It was worth the effort and the time that it took. He’s always been an innovator and a seeker. He’s a curator and an inspirer. He also helped John Cusack get his girlfriend back in the movie Say Anything.

A very grateful Gabriel hoisted the award above his head Cusack-style before his acceptance speech. “Watch out for music,” he said. “It should come with a health warning. It can be dangerous. It can make you feel so alive, so connected to the people around you, connected to what you are inside. It can make you think that the world should and could be a much better place. It can also make you very, very happy.” He then sat at the piano and duetted with Martin on the 1992 obscurity “Washing of the Water” before bringing out surprise guest Youssou N’Dour for a long, euphoric “In Your Eyes” that brought everyone to their feet.

The vast majority of press leading up to the Hall of Fame centered around the never-ending drama of Kiss, so it was a little surprising to see their big moment come and go so early in the evening, though it did make sense because they were the only inductees in the house that decided not to perform. Longtime Kiss superfan Tom Morello gave a fiery induction speech for his heroes. “Kiss was never a critics’ band,” he said. “Kiss was a people’s band…The first Kiss concert I saw was the single loudest, most cathartic two hours of music I’ve seen to this day.”

Ace Frehley, Peter Criss, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley walked onstage together to thunderous applause, and each of them looked a little choked up by the moment. Simmons spoke first, and, against all odds, was the most concise. “We are humbled to stand on this stage and do what we love doing,” he said. “This is a profound moment for all of us. I’m here to say a few kind words about the four knuckleheads who, 40 years ago, got together and decided to put together the kind of band we never saw onstage, critics be damned.”

After speaking kindly about his two former bandmates, he yielded the microphone to them. Peter Criss thanked everybody from the group’s former managers to their truck drivers, while Frehley rambled a bit since he had trouble reading his own notes without his proper glasses. “I was 13 when I picked up my first guitar,” he said. “I always sensed I was going to be into something big. A few years later, there I was. I experienced the Summer of Love.”

Stanley has been the most vocal critic of the Hall of Fame in the long buildup to this ceremony, and he used the opportunity to take some parting shots. “The people are speaking to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” he said. “They want more. They deserve more. They want to be part of the induction. They want to be a part of the nomination [process]. They don’t want to be spoon-fed a bunch of choices. The people pay for tickets. The people buy albums. The people who nominate do not.”

Any hopes of a surprise Kiss performance were dashed when they walked offstage and Art Garfunkel stepped out to induct Cat Stevens, who now goes by the name Yusuf Islam. “If Paul and I hadn’t split up around 1970 there’d be no room on the charts for Cat Stevens to take over,” he said. “‘Bridge Over Troubled Water had to go away so that Tea for the Tillerman could arrive.”

Cat Stevens gave a long speech where he name-checked everybody from Bach to Bo Diddley to Leonard Bernstein and Bob Dylan, even pausing in the middle to ask for a glass of water. He won the crowd right back when he picked up an acoustic guitar and delivered a flawless “Father and Son.” He’s 65 years old, but since he’s taken decades off from touring and lived a very healthy lifestyle, he sounded absolutely amazing. Paul Shaffer and his band then came out for “Wild World” and a rousing “Peace Train” where they got some help from a large choir. It served as a nice preview for the American tour that Yusuf is supposedly plotting for sometime in the near future.

From Wrinkles to Rap, a Rock Award’s Shifting Cast: 2013 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction

From the Heart: Heart singer Ann Wilson looks on as sister Nancy Wilson hugs presenter Chris Cornell at the 28th Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in L.A.

From the Heart: Heart singer Ann Wilson looks on as sister Nancy Wilson hugs presenter Chris Cornell at the 28th Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in L.A.

Heart, trailblazers for women in rock music, and the producer Lou Adler were inducted, while the queen of disco, Donna Summer, and the blues guitar legend Albert King were posthumously honored.

When the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last held its annual induction ceremony here 20 years ago, the singer and songwriter Randy Newman thought he might get his ticket into the hall. (He did not.) And the politically charged rap act Public Enemy had already logged hits with titles like “Fight the Power” and “Burn Hollywood Burn” that promised to overthrow the established order.

But Hollywood royalty was on hand to honor both Mr. Newman and Public Enemy here on Thursday night, as both acts were inducted into the Hall of Fame, a reflection of the huge growth in hip-hop’s popularity and influence over the last two decades and of the rapidly growing musical diversity in the hall.

“We represent the hip-hop community that also deserves recognition today,” said Chuck D, one of Public Enemy’s founders. The group is only the fourth hip-hop act to make it into the hall, after Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five (2007), Run-DMC (2009) and the Beastie Boys (2012). But Chuck D predicted that there would be more soon, citing other influential rappers like L L Cool J and Salt-n-Pepa. “Many of them you will see here in the next 10 years,” he said.

Musicians become eligible for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25 years after the release of their first album or single.

The show’s return to Los Angeles was part of a strategy to make the induction ceremony more accessible to the public, which has also involved holding it in larger spaces in recent years. In coming years it may rotate among New York, Cleveland (site of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum) and Los Angeles, officials said.

In keeping with the pomp that people have come to expect at this city’s award shows, performers filed along the red carpet (sometimes with the help of an escort to fend off the shrieking fans) into the 7,100-seat Nokia Theater. There, a sold-out crowd was treated to performers from different epochs and musical genres playing together onstage, a hallmark of the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies.

Usher did his best Michael Jackson impression as a tribute to the producer Quincy Jones, who was inducted this year. Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins of the Foo Fighters introduced Rush, which was inducted, and performed with the group onstage. Don Henley, Tom Petty and John Fogerty all played with Mr. Newman.

Aside from Public Enemy, all of the eight inductees had recorded some of their greatest successes by the 1970s, if not earlier. Heart, trailblazers for women in rock music, and the producer Lou Adler were inducted, while the queen of disco, Donna Summer, and the blues guitar legend Albert King were posthumously honored.

Mr. Newman, 69, joked about the age of many of the performers, including himself.

After being snubbed for two decades, he said, “I did think I was going to have to die and I’d be watching from below with my relatives.” He played a song called “I’m Dead (But I Don’t Know It),” about old musicians with gray hair who won’t retire “clogging the stage.”

Mr. Jones, already the recipient of 27 Grammys over the course of a career that has paired him with legends from Ray Charles to Michael Jackson, also noted how long it had taken him to get in. “I didn’t want to get into the Hall of Fame too early, so we waited a while,” he said.

As the night went on, the mood continued to lighten. Flavor Flav of Public Enemy no doubt assumed he had given the longest, most haphazard speech when he went on about his children and the clock he wears around his neck (among other subjects) until even his band mate, Chuck D, was giving him wrap-it-up signals on the stage.

“I only get to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame one time in my life,” Flavor Flav said. “I’m enjoying this.”

Not to be outdone, Alex Lifeson, Rush’s singer and guitarist, then gave an acceptance speech in which he repeated “blah blah” over and over for several minutes while aggressively gesticulating, leaving the crowd in hysterics.

Via The New York Times
Photo: Rolling Stone

[The end of each ceremony always raises the question: who will be inducted next year? One strong possibility is Nirvana, who will be eligible – their first single, “Love Buzz,” was released in 1988. “Wow, I didn’t even know that,” said Grohl. “Interesting. Well, hopefully they make us wait as long as Rush did, because did you see all their fucking fans out there tonight?”]