From the Vault...


Don Henley
"Building The
Perfect Beast"

© Geffen Records

Year of Release: 1984

track listing
  • The Boys Of Summer
  • You Can't Make Love
  • Man With A Mission
  • You're Not
    Drinking Enough
  • Not Enough Love
    In The World
  • Building The
    Perfect Beast
  • All She Wants
    To Do Is Dance
  • A Month Of Sundays
  • Sunset Grill
  • Drivin' With
    Your Eyes Closed
  • Land Of The Living

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

    Don Henley related sites:
    Don Henley Website
    Previous Review: #697
    Carl Douglas--The Soul Of The Kung Fu Fighter
    Next Review: #699
    John Anderson--Greatest Hits [wb]
    Don Henley
    "Building The Perfect Beast"

    To define one of the best groups of the 1970s, it would have to be California's Eagles. (They're my #2 choice, behind Led Zeppelin...) It's obvious (like many other bands) when they announced their split in 1980, that their fans would not have a dry eye. So in most cases, members of the Eagles journeyed into their solo careers. And pretty much the main core members of the Eagles were successful (Henley, Glenn Frey and Joe Walsh). Don Henley's first solo attempt, 1982's I Can't Stand Still, had some moderate success, but his second solo effort, 1984's Building The Perfect Beast, put him on the map as a very successful solo artist.

    The big hits from this album are quite obvious: The opening track, "The Boys Of Summer" is an emotional song, and yet some people refer to the boys of summer for baseball (and with the timing of this review, baseball season is almost over in another month...) Henley's "The Boys Of Summer" is a classic, just as the other well-known popular songs from this album...

    Like, "All She Wants To Do Is Dance," an upbeat danceable tune, yet for a song that truly has a great kick-butt sound, "Drivin' With Your Eyes Closed" is one of those songs you have to turn up loud while driving down the road, (hopefully, with eyes open, of course...)

    And the other well-known song from this album, as it is as recognizable as "The Boys Of Summer" is "Sunset Grill." Both these songs are emotional in lyrics and sound; and both are classic rock favorites.

    Now for the "not-so-recognizable" tunes from Building The Perfect Beast...

    "You Can't Make Love" is pop ditty, where it identifies Don Henley with his own sound, away from The Eagles. "Man With A Mission" could be a flashback to the 1950s sound, having a common rock 'n' roll/boogie woogie beat. "You're Not Drinking Enough" is a great ballad, that definitely his former band The Eagles, could of easily recorded. "Not Enough Love In The World" has a more pop sound, again, idenitifying Henley's music as his own.

    The title track has some potential, yet it's the only song that may not be as impressive as the others from this album. On a brighter note, "A Month Of Sundays" is a beautiful ballad, and displays Henley being an excellent ballad singer, as he had done with The Eagles. The album's closing song, "Land Of The Living" is a another nice pop number, with a slight gospel influence.

    Don Henley reached excessive heights with Building The Perfect Beast. His first solo record is best remembered for his hit "Dirty Laundry," yet Building The Perfect Beast has numerous songs that put Henley on the map as being the most successful as a solo artist from his other Eagle bandmates. Likewise, he would continue his solo success with his third solo album, The End Of The Innocence. But Eagle fans were on an emotional high, when The Eagles reunited in 1994 with Hell Freezes Over (the title stating that "Hell will freeze over, if the Eagles ever got back together again," with their bitter feuds since their breakup in 1980.)

    His latest solo release, Inside Job, hasn't caputred the success of his previous two albums, but Don Henley has always accomplished the fact that being an Eagle or not, he can still soar high with songs that rock in the style of his famous band, and his ballads have always been an extreme high as well. And, as most solo artists try to accomplish their own style and sound individually, Don Henley has always tried his best (and successfully) to "Take It To The Limit" his musical accomplishments to be enjoyed by Eagle fans, and music fans all over.

    © All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Geffen Records and is used for reference purposes only.

    Previous Review: #697
    Carl Douglas--The Soul Of The Kung Fu Fighter
    Next Review: #699
    John Anderson--Greatest Hits [wb]