Posts Tagged ‘Tropico’

Pat Benatar is one of the best artists to emerge from the MTV era of rock & roll: the 60s-90s. Among such heavyweights as Journey, the lovely ladies of Heart, Fleetwood Mac, and even the Buggles, Benatar holds her own with her powerhouse

Cover of "Live From Earth"

vocals. This what has made her an icon. However, as with all great artists, they are meant to be heard live. Benatar proves she’s worthy of this with her 1983 live album, Live From Earth.

However, with all great artists, they are meant to be heard live and Benatar proves that she’s worthy of the “must-see” concert label.

She opens the show with the haunting classic “Fire and Ice.” However, things get really amazing when she breaks into the gritty “I Want Out” followed by the awesomeness that is “We Live For Love” and the grisly, sad, and controversial “Hell Is For Children.” That track is literally one that leaps out of the speakers and grabs you instantly. Clearly, this is Pat Benatar at her “tough-girl” persona best. One which she would abandon for another persona, a bit more personal one if you will – motherhood, with her 1984 album Tropico. The two studio tracks, the ever-popular “Love Is A Battlefield” and “Lipstick Lies” (both containing very memorable videos – such as Benatar herself doing Michael Jackson-style dance sequences) serve as a great transition into this new era for Benatar.

What Pat Benatar live album would not be complete without her performing her swan song, “Hit Me With Your Best Shot?” None! However, this is probably the weaker track of this album because you can barely hear her vocals. Since the album was recorded in many places, wherever they recorded it, the acoustics are TERRIBLE!

Benatar and her husband Neil Geraldo quickly redeem themselves on “Promises In the Dark.” The live version of “Promises In The Dark” actually sounds better than the recording as heard on 1983’s Precious Time album.

This album is okay, however it seems more or less like a greatest hits collection thrown in with a few new tracks. But its a good live album overall from what sounds like one exciting tour. B+


Tropico (album)

Image via Wikipedia

Throughout her career, Pat Benatar has worn many wardrobes: angry rocker chick, sultry singer, wife to guitarist Neil Giraldo, and on 1984’s Tropico, impending motherhood. Benatar and husband Neil Giraldo found out that they were pregnant with their firstborn [their duaghter Haley] between the video shoot for Painted Desert and the recording of We Belong.

As with impending motherhood and the requirement of growing up, Benatar and Giraldo grow up musically with this album. This is well shown in the lyrics of Takin’ It Back. Benatar and Giraldo trade in the hard rock that made In the Heat Of The Night, Crimes of Passion and even Get Nervous for a more pop-oriented sounding album. Also, gone is the anger and grit that made those albums. Instead, a considerably toned-down persona has taken its place. Surprisingly, it fits Benatar very well.

There’s literally is no weak track on Tropico. This is perhaps Benatar’s strongest effort since Crimes of Passion. Also, it relies less on the angry rock and more on optimism, which is shown on Diamond Field and the album’s hit single We Belong.

However, some of the best tracks aren’t even 100% hit material – such as Love In the Ice Age and A Crazy World Like This.

Overall, this is a “don’t miss” album by Pat Benatar.

Beyonce Is Preggers!!! Announces Pregnancy At MTV VMAs!! |

That’s right everyone, Houston’s own Beyonce announced at the MTV VMA’s that she and husband Jay-Z are expecting their first child.


With that said I would like to make a song dedication to Beyonce and her husband. It’s from one of my favorite singers, who, upon recording this song and the subsequent album, found out she was pregnant.

The Wild Heart’s existence is officially justified! I’m not going to name names of who thinks we should not exist, but now I have proof that vinyl is superior in sound to both cds, Zunes, and iPods.

As I am writing this, I am listening to one of my latest purchases from the record store, Pat Benatar’s 1984 release Tropico. I own about 2/5ths of the album in other formats: iTunes and her Greatest hits on CD. As I am listening to Painted Desert, one thing that I can clearly hear is her husband, guitarist Neil Giraldo’s beautiful guitar playing as well as some bongos in the background. This cannot be heard on the version that I have on iTunes.

Let’s face it, the days of the CD are numbered. It will become like the 8track: history. Vinyl will once again be king and mp3’s will be at where cassettes were in the 80’s and 90’s – mixtape madness. That is, if people are smart enough.

I say this because the current bestselling artist worldwide, Lady GaGa, has released her latest album Born This Way on vinyl. Other current artists such as Green Day, Adele, and even Nine Inch Nails. Furthermore, other great classic rock artists like Fleetwood Mac, who re-released their landmark Rumours album on vinyl last April, the Police, Guns & Roses, Stevie Nicks, and the late Michael Jackson – who saw a huge resurgence of record sales in 2009 after his death, are re-releasing some of their greatest albums on vinyl.

Now let’s compare some of the qualities of that vinyl has over cds or even iTunes using the current album I am playing: Tropico by Pat Benatar along with a few others from the immaculate collection of the Wild Heart.

Cost: Since we are in a recession we’re fighting high gas prices, cost is everything right now. For my latest purchase, Pat Benatar’s Tropico was $6 used at Black Dog Records in Houston, TX – a place specializing in near-mint condition vinyl. On iTunes, to download this entire album, its $10. Now since apparently this album as a stand-alone is out of print (they re-released it as a dual-CD with Seven The Hard Way) so if you want a stand-alone copy of this album you will end up paying a whopping $10.95 for a used copy of this Pat Benatar classic. However, new vinyl is rather costly – look to spend at least $25 or more.

Sound: Did you know that you hear in analogue? You do. CD’s are recorded in digital, which is why they have an artificial sound. The sounds on a CD or even an mp3 are digital sounds, meaning the sound is more processed and less organic. It doesn’t sound as rich as it should. Take for example Stevie Nicks’ song Sister Honey from her 1985 album Rock A Little. On this track, you can clearly hear the disco-style bass line as well as the high parts where Nicks nearly screams “and she’ll go fast like a jet plane and then fast like a star stream.” As one that likes to listen to this album at work on Grooveshark as well as owns the actual album, the LP version is superior not only due to the sound quality, but the song sequence is messed up on Grooveshark. (I don’t have time to put it in its rightful order) With any artist, there’s a reason the songs are in a certain order. This could be due to the fact the album maybe a live recording, a concept album, or the artist – such as is the case with Nicks – who’s known for being picky about the song sequence on her albums. Also one major downside to vinyl is the fact that it gets scratched after repeated usage – thus affecting the sound quality.

However, we should not knock mp3’s. They are great for sharing music (in the legal way!) and, if you have a smartphone like an iPhone or Android, you can play music for your friends wherever and whenever.