Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers (1976/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 00:30:31 minutes | 627 MB | Genre: Rock
Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | © Warner Bros. Records
Recorded: 1974–76 at Shelter Studio, Hollywood, CA
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers is the eponymous debut album by the band of the same name, released on November 9, 1976 by Shelter Records.
Initially following its release, the album received little attention in the United States. Following a British tour, it climbed to #24 on the UK album chart and the single “Anything That’s Rock ‘n’ Roll” became a hit in the UK. After nearly a year and many positive reviews, the album reached the U.S. charts, where it climbed to #55 in 1978 and eventually went Gold. The single “Breakdown” cracked the Top 40 in the U.S. and “American Girl” became an FM radio staple that can still be heard today.
At the time Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ debut was released in 1976, they were fresh enough to almost be considered punk. They weren’t as reckless or visionary as the Ramones, but they shared a similar love for pure ’60s rock and, for the Heartbreakers, that meant embracing the Byrds as much as the Stones. And that’s pretty much what this album is — tuneful jangle balanced by a tough garage swagger. At times, the attitude and the sound override the songwriting, but that’s alright, since the slight songs (“Anything That’s Rock ‘N’ Roll,” to pick a random example) are still infused with spirit and an appealing surface. Petty & the Heartbreakers feel underground on this album, at least to the extent that power pop was underground in 1976; with Dwight Twilley providing backing vocals for “Strangered in the Night,” the similarities between the two bands (adherence to pop hooks and melodies, love of guitars) become apparent. Petty wound up eclipsing Twilley because he rocked harder, something that’s evident throughout this record. Take the closer “American Girl” — it’s a Byrds song by any other name, but he pushed the Heartbreakers to treat it as a rock & roll song, not as something delicate. There are times where the album starts to drift, especially on the second side, but the highlights — “Rockin’ Around (With You),” “Hometown Blues,” “The Wild One, Forever,” the AOR staples “Breakdown” and “American Girl” — still illustrate how refreshing Petty & the Heartbreakers sounded in 1976. –Stephen Thomas Erlewine
1 Rockin’ Around (With You) 2:29
2 Breakdown 2:44
3 Hometown Blues 2:14
4 The Wild One, Forever 3:02
5 Anything That’s Rock ‘N’ Roll 2:24
6 Strangered In The Night 3:33
7 Fooled Again (I Don’t Like It) 3:49
8 Mystery Man 3:03
9 Luna 3:58
10 American Girl 3:32
Tom Petty – vocals, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, keyboards
Mike Campbell – electric guitar, acoustic guitar
Benmont Tench – piano, hammond organ, keyboards
Ron Blair – bass guitar on tracks 1-2, 4-5, 7-10, cello
Stan Lynch – drums on tracks 1-2, 4-10, keyboards
Jeff Jourard – electric guitar on tracks 2, 7
Donald “Duck” Dunn – bass guitar on track 3
Emory Gordy – bass guitar on track 6
Randall Marsh – drums on track 3
Jim Gordon – drums on track 6
Noah Shark – maracas, tambourine, sleigh bells
Charlie Souza – saxophone on track 3
Phil Seymour – backing vocals
Dwight Twilley – backing vocals
Producer’s Note: Tom Petty Hi-Res Remastering :: The Hi-Res (24bit 96K) remastering of the Tom Petty catalog reveals a level of detail that was only previously heard by a select group of musicians, producers and engineers in the studio. It’s as close to the sound of original stereo master as you can get. We’re very happy with the way it came out, and believe it’s an important way to preserve the legacy of this great body of work.
If hearing the highest possible sound quality is important to you, then this is where you’ll get it.
The remastering was done in the fall of 2014 by Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering. I supervised it and Tom approved it. Great care was taken to find the original first-generation masters and transfer them with minimal eq and little or no dynamic range compression. In cases where the first-generation masters were unusable, we used the best sounding second-generation masters.*
To allow for full dynamic range, and to let the music “breathe” the Hi-Res versions have about 6-8db less digital level than a typical “loud” peak-limited CD or mp3. To enjoy these albums to their fullest extent, play them back though a good system and turn up the volume.
With this increased level of detail and sonic impact, we hope you’ll enjoy rediscovering these great albums as much as we did! —Ryan Ulyate, April 2014