“Hypnotic Eye” – Tom Petty


  1. American Dream Plan B – This was my favorite song right away, as described in the full review.  It is simple, raw, sassy and very rock n’ roll.  I love the lyrics because they are so simple, clever and punky – “when I see what I want, I go after it!”
  2. Fault Lines – the rhythm pattern of this song was really familiar, but now I am realizing I lack the vocabulary to accurately describe it. I want to say bossa nova with a lot of hi-hat, set to a bass line that is almost surf-rock mixed with really fast swing.  Clearly I need to take a music class if I am going to keep up with this blog!
  3. Red River – This was another contender for favorite, but I didn’t like it right away. It seemed too 70s cliché and melodramatic at first, but then I learned to adore the singable chorus and almost CSNY feel that it carries.
  4. Full Grown Boy – One of my least favorites on the album. “Full Grown Boy” is a little bit jazzy, and would remind me of a Steely Dan number if it only included some female backing vocals… as it is though, it just really isn’t my style and I think the lyrics are weird.  For example: “and the foreman seems to know me ‘cause I found myself at last.”
  5. All You Can Carry – This one has a 60s/70s psychedelic vibe to it; I think the lyrics have some styling/reverb that gives the song a really vintage feel. Pretty good!
  6. Power Drunk – This song has a cocky confidence (fitting for the title) that alternates acapella one-liners with heavy guitar. Speaking of guitar, this one has a solo that I like, set above a background reminiscent of ZZ Top. Then the chorus breaks into repentant and classically nasal Petty vocals… if it seems like there is a lot going on here, it’s for good reason.
  7. Forgotten Man – Another example of the best, most rocking songs on the album. I can totally see this as a Patty Smith performance piece, with her arms up, feet dancing and voice booming.  That’s probably why I like it so much – I was singing along in the car with my imitation Patty voice!
  8. Sins Of My Youth – This track is in a haunting, minor key, causing you to wonder what exactly ARE the numbered and varied sins of T.P.’s youth? Not too slow, not too miserable, yet not really one of my favorites.
  9. U Get Me High – Here is kind of an 80s rock song à la Sonic Youth mixed with Teenage Fanclub, if that makes any sense. Power rock chords on the chorus, drug reference in the title, and there you have it.
  10. Burnt Out Town – Yet another that is just not my favorite kind of music; it annoys me with the repetitive chorus and that bluesy, George Thorogood-esque style. If you want to tap your foot, slowly shake your head, and be inspired to do a harmonica solo on the break, then you might enjoy playing this one with your friends.
  11. Shadow People – I had to look this up, because I was convinced I had heard of a Joni Mitchell song called this (or something similar)… nope!  Not a cover.  Just Petty Poetry.   And his voice is starting to sound a little like (aging) Bob Dylan here, too!  A fitting song to finish up the album.

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