From the Vault...


Tom Petty &
The Heartbreakers
"Hypnotic Eye"

© Reprise Records

Year of Release: 2014

track listing
  • American Dream Plan B
  • Fault Lines
  • Red River
  • Full Grown Boy
  • All You Can Carry
  • Power Drunk
  • Forgotten Man
  • Sins Of My Youth
  • U Get Me High
  • Burnt Out Town
  • Shadow People

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    "Hypnotic Eye"

    In their entire career, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers never had a #1 song. That fact still remains. They never had a #1 album either. Until 2014... Hypnotic Eye

    Just when you thought Petty's music surpassed their heyday when they first emerged in the Rock scene in the mid-1970s (1976), they actually had much success throughout the end of the 1970s, the 1980s decade, and even the 1990s. They still recorded in the 21st Century, with good success, but not as much as the previous decades. Not bad for a band that still remains with us, going on 40 years. (Wow, has it been 40 years since their first album? Yep.)

    Just as their previous releases throughout the decade, Hypnotic Eye has some great tunes. "American Dream Plan B" (the album's first single) is a good starter. "Fault Lines" (the album's fifth single) does bring back the early Petty years (which this album was based on). "Red River" (the album's second single) has Petty's voice just as how we remembered back in the early years. (His voice has a smiliarity to that of Bob Dylan's; both voices may not sound as "true singers," but yet, their recorded music has always stood out as great Rock & Roll music.)

    "Full Grown Boy" has a somewhat nostalgic sound. It's quite good (as this album keeps continuing, in a very good way). "All You Can Carry" has a rock powerhouse sound; a mix of power rock and later-years Buddy Guy blues. "Power Drunk" calms it down a bit, and just as previous songs, it's another good one. Another blues-feel tune; Bob Dylan's "Gotta Serve Somebody" comes to mind -- another great Dylan song.

    "Forgotten Man" (the album's fourth single) is a song that should (and will not) be forgotten. It's another Petty rocker. "Sins Of My Youth" is more moody; not the kind of song you'd expect from Petty and crew. Moody yes, good song also. Then there's "U Get Me High" (the album's third single), another very well identified track by Petty and crew. Another Petty'ish track, the groovin' "Burnt Out Town." "Shadow People" closes the album out, and it's another song similar to "Power Drunk" -- another slow, groovin' blues-influenced track.

    Hypnotic Eye by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers deserved the #1 spot for this album. In fact, it debuted at #1 in 2014, and was nominated for the 2015 Grammy Award, for Best Rock Album. (Beck's Morning Phase got the honor.) It is just a wonder that Petty's previous albums (especially the more popular ones, with the popular hits) did not reach the top spot. Although many, if not all, of Petty's albums have been great standouts. Hypnotic Eye is no exception. This album was based on the band's first two albums -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and You're Gonna Get It. Both of these early albums marked a stylistic return to these albums' sound. Yet it would be their third and beyond albums that would reach their popularity at full-tilt. The many hit songs followed with 1979's Damn The Torpedoes. Not to say that at least one popular song would emerge from their first two albums: "Breakdown" and "I Need To Know."

    There isn't a bad song anywhere on Hypnotic Eye. Just as many albums previous, Petty's albums have always achieved its own rights and popularity. Many of their later singles may not be as highly remembered as their heyday, yet still, this is Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers.. One of Rock's greatest bands. This album is highly recommended. Tom Petty was inducted into the Rock & Roll of Fame, in 2002.

    UPDATE: It is of great sadness to report, that Tom Petty passed away on October 2, 2017. Petty was found unconscious at his home, not breathing and in full cardiac arrest, early in the morning of October 2, 2017. He was taken to the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica, California, where he died at 8:40 pm PDT that evening.

    After reports of Petty's hospitalization, premature reports of his death spread quickly and widely, and without official denial or confirmation, continued throughout the day until the band's management issued official confirmation shortly after Petty's death Monday evening. While the official announcement said Petty collapsed early Monday morning, original reports claimed the incident happened Sunday night.

    RIP Tom Petty -- You left behind a great legacy of music, with the Heartbreakers and with the supergroup, the Travelling Wilburys. Your music will always be cherished amd enjoyed for many generations to come.

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