10 Songs, 39 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

With his commercial prospects bright after the success of Damn the Torpedoes, Tom Petty battled his record company over their practice of using new albums from major artists to hike retail prices on consumers. He held the line, and Hard Promises was released at the standard rate; Petty earned press accolades before the album hit shelves. Upon its release, songs such as “The Waiting,” “A Woman in Love (It’s Not Me),” and “Nightwatchman” hit hard on Top 40 and rock radio. As a vocalist, Petty comes into his own here, accenting his personal phrasings and reaching emotional catharsis on “A Woman in Love” and doing a mighty pairing with Stevie Nicks on “Insider.” At a time when rock was splintering into factions like new wave, AOR, heavy metal, and punk, Petty and his peerless band, The Heartbreakers, were turning in classic-sounding rock heavy on snarling guitars and howling organs, as evidenced on the aforementioned hits and lesser-known fan favorites like “Kings Road,” “Letting You Go,” and “A Thing About You.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

With his commercial prospects bright after the success of Damn the Torpedoes, Tom Petty battled his record company over their practice of using new albums from major artists to hike retail prices on consumers. He held the line, and Hard Promises was released at the standard rate; Petty earned press accolades before the album hit shelves. Upon its release, songs such as “The Waiting,” “A Woman in Love (It’s Not Me),” and “Nightwatchman” hit hard on Top 40 and rock radio. As a vocalist, Petty comes into his own here, accenting his personal phrasings and reaching emotional catharsis on “A Woman in Love” and doing a mighty pairing with Stevie Nicks on “Insider.” At a time when rock was splintering into factions like new wave, AOR, heavy metal, and punk, Petty and his peerless band, The Heartbreakers, were turning in classic-sounding rock heavy on snarling guitars and howling organs, as evidenced on the aforementioned hits and lesser-known fan favorites like “Kings Road,” “Letting You Go,” and “A Thing About You.”

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