Friday, August 7, 2009

Tom Petty 2: You’re Gonna Get It

Rather than a quick follow-up, the second album from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers took a while. You’re Gonna Get It! followed much of the same mold as the debut, with the added menace of the entire band staring down the listener on the front cover. There was only one song about “rockin’” this time, and a little more variety in the styles of the songs, which gives it the slightest edge over the debut.

“When The Time Comes” sets a blueprint for success, getting an awful lot out of three chords, then the title track gives Benmont Tench chance to add color in between the vocals, which teeter between menacing and longing. “Hurt” suggests a kind of deliverance from whatever misdeeds transpired in the first two songs. “Magnolia” is a template for a song he’d rewrite again and again, and better, while “Too Much Ain’t Enough” is built around a snaky riff pummeled into the wall.

Two big radio hits, “I Need To Know” and “Listen To Her Heart”, start off side two. The latter is another blatant Byrds homage—save the line about cocaine—while “No Second Thoughts” takes its influence from “Factory Girl” off Beggars Banquet, of all things. “Restless” makes the mildest dalliance with funk, and “Baby’s A Rock ‘n’ Roller” is really the only wince-inducing track here.

You’re Gonna Get It! is even shorter than the first album, so if somebody wanted to do us a big favor, they would put both albums on a single CD, as they really do go together. But record company shenanigans loom large throughout Petty’s story, and while the band was off to a good start, they couldn’t afford a third strike.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers You’re Gonna Get It! (1978)—3

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