(Los Angeles) The next two months will have a whole lot of Heart — the superstar rock band, that is — with three releases of classic and recent music coinciding with the group’s three-month, 40-plus date nationwide summer tour. On May 13, Epic/Legacy will release a Heart twofer set that combines their landmark, multimillion selling albums Little Queen (1977) and Dog & Butterfly (1979) into one eco-friendly package as part of the debut of the X2 series. The X2 set boasts five bonus tracks, including a live recording of Heart performing Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway To Heaven.” And the liner notes by critic Michael Hill for the Heart Playlist collection make the case that “You could call Heart the first great indie-rock band” — they debuted with Dreamboat Annie on a Canadian independent label — and observe how “The Wilson sisters flipped the script on male-dominated rock, fronting a group of guys while never acceding to the role of rock-chick window dressing. Their up-tempo numbers were loud, fast, and economically arranged, focusing on Ann’s amazing pipes and some killer guitar licks, but they also displayed a gentler, more hippie-like side that was equally appealing.”
Epic/Legacy will also release a Heart title as part of its Playlist series that gathers 14 of the group’s best songs — all re-mastered and mp3 ready — into an also eco-friendly digi-pak set that includes computer accessible pdf files containing liner notes essays, discographical information, photography, bonus features, and more.
The two packages also coincide with the recently announced June 3 re-release of Jupiter’s Darling, Heart’s most recent studio recording from 2004 that was hailed as “probably their best album to date” from the influential and beloved band and “the only album you need to buy this year” by England’s Rave magazine. All Music Guide praised it as “easily the band’s finest moment in over 20 years [that] proves in spades that Heart is a vital and creative rock’n’roll unit and a force to be reckoned with.”
Heart’s 32 years of ongoing and consistently high-quality rocking has had a cumulative effect that finds the band’s appeal resurging as they make 2008 a particularly active year. The recent appearance by Ann & Nancy Wilson on the Idol Gives Back TV charity special performing “Barracuda” with Fergie powered a sales surge on iTunes for the original track as well as the clip of the song from the show. And since the announcement of the group’s summer tour with Journey and Cheap Trick, membership in the Heart fan club (“Heartmongers”) has doubled. On the tour fans will be able to enjoy performances from the extensive catalog of hits as well as songs from Ann Wilson’s recent Zoe/Rounder Records solo album Hope & Glory.
The group’s many 2008 activities and resurgent popularity suggest that even after 30 million albums sold to date, a groundbreaking legacy and a stature to rival rock’s biggest stars, Heart’s fourth decade of rocking will be as notable as those that came before.
Press release courtesy of Miles High Productions.