Release Date: Oct 2, 2012
Record label: Epic
When Ann Wilson shouts, "Eat it raw!" on "59 Crunch" in that same hood-rat, kiss-my-ass-Robert Plant holler that marked 30 years of classic rock burners, you suspect she isn't referring to a vegan lunch. Back with producer Ben Mink, who shaped 2010's startlingly good Red Velvet Car, the Wilson sisters ride a late-game hot streak through Fanatic, still living up to their band name. Listen to "Fanatic": .
When I was kvelling over Heart’s career-defining box set Strange Euphoria, I was thrilled to find out that Heart was releasing a new album this year—but I was also a little nervous that it might not live up to what they’d been doing lately. I loved Jupiter’s Darling, but I loved Red Velvet Car a little less, and it seemed another record coming so soon had the potential for a rush-job drop-off. But you shouldn’t EVER doubt Heart.
2012 has been quite a year for Heart's Ann and Nancy Wilson. In June, the multi-disc box set retrospective Strange Euphoria was released. It was followed in September by the publication of their memoir, Kicking & Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul and Rock and Roll. And in October comes Fanatic, a brand new studio offering.
The soft stuff is nice, but we like our Heart to be hard rockin’—more “Barracuda” than ballads. Fortunately, the Wilson sisters comes out swinging old-school style with a full-throttle title track that sets the tone for the bulk of their 14th studio album. “Dear Old America” matches its lyrical sentimentality with heavy guitars and a bit of funk, while “59 Crunch” provides plenty of its title’s second word, and “Masallah” is powered by a thick groove with string accompaniment that nods to the Wilsons’ love of Led Zeppelin.