Robert Palmers ground breaking LP Heavy Nova included his biggest hit, the #1 Simply Irresistible. The video of that song changed music video and has since influenced music, television and movies. This CD has Palmers entire smash 1988 LP.
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Member CD Reviews
(Breninithaca) from AURORA, NY
Reviewed on 9/2/2006...
Only giving this up because I now have a copy of his greatest hits...
from LIVERMORE, CA
Reviewed on 8/8/2006...
One of his best...
The Memorable Mr. Palmer
Mike B. | 03/03/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD represents the culmination of his craft, on which Robert Palmer put it all together. Every type of music he'd ever experimented with is present here. Indeed, it's a virtual "world tour" of rhythm. Utterly fantastic in its breadth and scope, the British Palmer wove it all together seamlessly in a way that eluded other worldbeat-dabbling rockers of the day. The only other record I can think of that put forth such a variety of beats and song styles is David Bowie's "Black Tie White Noise", but even that great effort doesn't cohere as perfectly as "Heavy Nova". This is a textbook example of how to do it right, and should be studied by music students in composition classes.
Lyrically, however, Palmer is more limited than Bowie. Though his words are clever, a close look at this album (and his back catalogue) reveals that he only really wrote about one subject - sex, and the related topics of love and relationships. In this regard he could be considered to be the white Barry White. It must be said though that he's very good at being a "love man", perhaps unequalled - so don't let this put you off. If you do, you'll miss out on a lot of great music!
Tina Weymouth of the Talking Heads once opined that Robert Palmer was the hardest working, most innovative musician she'd ever met. Rod Stewart was such a big fan that he'd call up radio stations to request his songs. Though he had the respect of his peers, Palmer today isn't remembered as much as he should be by record buyers (or downloaders - hi kids!).
I think there's a good reason for that. I always felt Palmer would've had a much longer and more successful career if he hadn't worn a suit for so many years. A short phase of that might've been OK, but he looked too straight for too long. Too "legit" for rock 'n' roll. This was hammered home to me when I went to see the "Heavy Nova" tour and the one prop that hung over the stage was a large pink neon-lit outline of a martini glass, complete with a pink outlined olive with a toothpick going through it! It was so un-cool.
At the time I worked at a large company with many secretaries, and that night I saw all of them had dragged their boyfriends to the show. No doubt they were expecting a lively concert of dance music - after all, he'd had a couple of giant hits with "Addicted To Love" and "I Didn't Mean To Turn You On". What they got was a man in a suit crooning too many ballads and Caribbean-flavored numbers. There they sat with their big 1980's hair, staring uncomprehendingly and applauding tepidly - apparently bored stiff. By the time he encored with a couple of upbeat dance numbers, the damage had already been done. The word at work the next day was that the concert was terrible.
In all my years of concert-going, I've never seen an artist misjudge his audience to this extent. We were all still pretty young, and felt like we were watching Bing Crosby on a set designed for Dean Martin (hi grandpop!). Palmer had committed the cardinal sin of making us feel old and un-hip, and paid a heavy price for this transgression. Disagree with me if you must, but I believe that the bad word-of-mouth about this tour is what torpedoed his career. Fans were further alienated by his foray into "big band" music on his next two records. When he finally returned to his old style, no one cared anymore. He never again had a hit, and all album releases following Nova failed to sell or generate any attention.
Regardless of this, "Heavy Nova" stands as a testament to a true genius of songwriting captured at the peak of his career, with unparalleled arranging and interpretive skills. His voice is thrilling - nuanced, yet always exuberant. Robert Palmer sang with infectious joy and truly loved all kinds of music. Soul, r&b, calypso, rock, new wave - nothing was beyond his reach or capability. Not only could he do it all - he could do it well. This comes through on all of his wonderful albums. There's none I wouldn't recommend buying, but none contain as much variety as this one. It really is a masterpiece. Check it out, and pass the word to your friends. Palmer deserves to be remembered."
Mmmm Robert Palmer!
Traci L. Bounds | Charleston, WV United States | 01/15/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Early In The Morning...Tell Me I'm Not Dreaming. This man was sooo sexy. Taken way to early."