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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It really starts here
The progression which transformed the Eagles between their country-ish debut album and the final stunning "The Long Run" continued after the band split, so that, separately, the former band members have produced a body of work which far surpasses that of the Eagles as a band.

Though best known for the iconic "Boys of Summer", "Building the Perfect Beast" is a...
Published on 13 Sep 2006 by Friendlycard

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars perfect present
i decide to purchase this album after my girlfriend heard boys of summer on Magic. and she really liked the song.
Lets just say shes very happy
Published 12 months ago by Alan Thackery


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It really starts here, 13 Sep 2006
By 
Friendlycard (Norfolk, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
The progression which transformed the Eagles between their country-ish debut album and the final stunning "The Long Run" continued after the band split, so that, separately, the former band members have produced a body of work which far surpasses that of the Eagles as a band.

Though best known for the iconic "Boys of Summer", "Building the Perfect Beast" is a superb and consistent album, far better than "I Can't Stand Still". The album continues the rocky, gritty feel of its predecessor, and stand-out tracks include "A Month of Sundays", "Driving with Your Eyes Closed" and - a personal favourite - "Sunset Grill". Great stuff, an effortless five-stars, and a must-own album for rock fans. Yet the best was STILL to come....
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 carat Don, 27 Jun 2001
By 
h@bee.tc (Manchester, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
This is one of the CD's that I simply couldn't live without (I know - I want my MTV and stuff, but every time I lend it to someone to listen to I worry about getting it back)
I am tempted to go thru it track by track but that would bore everyone.... let's just say on this CD Don Henley was really paying attention. The songs on it are not only tight and well produced, but appear to have had meaning to him during their composition.
One of the most spectacular tracks is "Sunset Grill" which took me most time to get into, probably because of it's complexity and complete disregard of convention for musical 'standards' - this track leaves me in awe now everytime I hear it. (By the way, if you're lucky you might hear this on the Eagles world tour concert)
Quite apart from being a great tune, "The Boys f Summer" rates as one of my all-time best videos and I wish I could buy it somewhere as a video, I've looked (anyone know where I can get it?) It's the one where it's black and white but DEFINITELY not grey allover) This piece of music has got to be known as an anthem.
One of the tracks which surprised me in content and meaning is "A Month of Sundays" - I had no idea pop-stars were aware of the real world like this.
The rest of the CD is only excellent.
If you are a Don Henley fan or an Eagles fan - this is a 'must have' CD. If you can only afford one Henley CD - make it this one.
If you can afford others - then stick "The End of the Innocence" in your basket too. It's in the same superb vein and almost as good.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Much more than just another '80s record., 27 Feb 2005
By 
Themis-Athena (from somewhere between California and Germany) - See all my reviews
Songwriting is no trifle matter to Don Henley. And although in the early 1970s the magic duo of Henley/Frey churned out hits with enough speed to allow for the production of four albums in four years, followed by an all-time best-selling Greatest Hits (Vol. 1) album even before the release of the Eagles' classic "Hotel California," he started to take things considerably slower in his post-Eagles solo career. The two years he took to follow up 1982's "I Can't Stand Still" with "Building the Perfect Beast" were actually the shortest time between any two of his solo albums; in part due to the fact that, as Henley explained, his collaboration with Danny "Kootch" Kortchmar worked along lines different from those he had established with Glenn Frey in the Eagles. These were no longer two guys sitting down together in a room with a guitar and a drum kit: For Don Henley's second solo release, bowing to the musical developments of the 1980s, they relied heavily on synthesized sounds (Henley's tour promoting the album even featured an elaborate light show, something that would have been inconceivable for any of the Eagles' tours). And while making most of the songs on the album easily "listenable" and producing several top-selling singles ("All She Wants to Do Is Dance," "Sunset Grill," "Boys of Summer" and "Not Enough Love in the World"), that choice of instrumentation also seemed to render "Building the Perfect Beast" the most easily dateable of all of Henley's solo releases.
Lyrically, however, Henley had lost nothing of his bite; the album's very name is indicative of that fact. "We're the ones who can kill the things we don't eat," he warned in the title track, musically the edgiest song on the album (synthesizers or not) - "we have met the enemy, and he is us ... the secrets of eternity; we've found the lock and turned the key ... all the way to Malibu from the Land of the Talking Drum, just look how far we've come." "Sunset Grill" and "A Month of Sundays" lament the death of small mom-and-pop farms and businesses and their takeover by large corporations; a criticism of Reaganomics Henley would take up even more forcefully in 1989's "The End of the Innocence." (Ironically, his beloved Sunset Grill in L.A. later went down that very same path, too - "Don't go there," he therefore quipped during the closing appearance of his 2000-2001 "Inside Job" tour, "it ain't there anymore. Even though it still has the same name. Even though the guy has my name on the menu. Don't go there!") "All She Wants to Do Is Dance" has a similar theme, focusing on corporate and political greed in general. "The Boys of Summer," musically based on a guitar riff supplied by Heartbreaker Mike Campbell, is a warning not to look back and romanticize the past but rather, to look toward the future - just keep your eyes open whatever you do, though, because if you're Driving With Your Eyes Closed "you're gonna hit somethin' ... but that's the way it goes."
As on all of his solo releases, Henley was able to secure the collaboration of a virtual all-star cast of musicians, from Fleetwood Mac's Lindsey Buckingham and Heartbreakers Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench to Randy Newman, Patty Smyth, Belinda Carlisle, Richard and Waddy Wachtel, Toto's Steve Porcaro and David Paich, "inofficial Eagle" J.D. Souther, and many, many more. And despite the seeming bow to the 1980s' musical tastes in the instrumentation of many of the album's tracks, their lasting quality becomes apparent like on no other occasion when Henley performs them live, as he did on his recently-concluded tour. Stripped of some of their fancy effects, they stand up even more visibly to the class of his other work, both with the Eagles and solo - and you just have to have heard that stunning, several minutes' long drum/percussion intro (not even performed by Henley himself) to "All She Wants to Do Is Dance," the closing song of the tour's regular program.
"Building the Perfect Beast" cemented Don Henley's standing as a solo artist, and it paved the way for his biggest release to date, "End of the Innocence." As he had done with his bandmates a decade earlier, Henley again proved that he was able to create something lasting, in whatever format he chose. Maturity added more focus to his work (lyrically if nowhere else); and vocally, many of the tracks on this album are among the most demanding he has ever written. Unlike the output of the era's countless hair bands, disco kings and queens and punk bands, all of Don Henley's first three solo releases still have a large enough audience to warrant their inclusion in the catalogue of every major record store - including the seemingly so 1980s-sounding "Building the Perfect Beast."
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Probably Don Henley's best solo album, 29 Nov 2002
By 
Docendo Discimus (Vita scholae) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
This is probably former Eagles drummer Don Henley's best solo effort, with "The End Of The Innocence" coming in a close second.
Perhaps a bit too much synth for my taste, but that's a minor complaint, and "Building The Perfect Beast" does feature some of Henley's best songs, such as the MTV hit "The Boys Of Summer", "You Can't Make Love", "Not Enough Love In The World", "You're Not Drinking Enough" and "All She Wants To Do Is Dance".
Henley's voice is strong (he was always The Eagles' greatest singer), and with the exception of a few minor tracks, the songs are of high quality, both lyrically and melodically.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Much more than just another '80s record., 29 Aug 2003
By 
Themis-Athena (from somewhere between California and Germany) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
Songwriting is no trifle matter to Don Henley. And although in the early 1970s the magic duo of Henley/Frey churned out hits with enough speed to allow for the production of four albums in four years, followed by an all-time best-selling Greatest Hits (Vol. 1) album even before the release of the Eagles' classic "Hotel California," he started to take things considerably slower in his post-Eagles solo career. The two years he took to follow up 1982's "I Can't Stand Still" with "Building the Perfect Beast" were actually the shortest time between any two of his solo albums; in part due to the fact that, as Henley explained, his collaboration with Danny "Kootch" Kortchmar worked along lines different from those he had established with Glenn Frey in the Eagles. These were no longer two guys sitting down together in a room with a guitar and a drum kit: For Don Henley's second solo release, bowing to the musical developments of the 1980s, they relied heavily on synthesized sounds (Henley's tour promoting the album even featured an elaborate light show, something that would have been inconceivable for any of the Eagles' tours). And while making most of the songs on the album easily "listenable" and producing several top-selling singles ("All She Wants to Do Is Dance," "Sunset Grill," "Boys of Summer" and "Not Enough Love in the World"), that choice of instrumentation also seemed to render "Building the Perfect Beast" the most easily dateable of all of Henley's solo releases.
Lyrically, however, Henley had lost nothing of his bite; the album's very name is indicative of that fact. "We're the ones who can kill the things we don't eat," he warned in the title track, musically the edgiest song on the album (synthesizers or not) - "we have met the enemy, and he is us ... the secrets of eternity; we've found the lock and turned the key ... all the way to Malibu from the Land of the Talking Drum, just look how far we've come." "Sunset Grill" and "A Month of Sundays" lament the death of small mom-and-pop farms and businesses and their takeover by large corporations; a criticism of Reaganomics Henley would take up even more forcefully in 1989's "The End of the Innocence." (Ironically, his beloved Sunset Grill in L.A. later went down that very same path, too - "Don't go there," he therefore quipped during the closing appearance of his 2000-2001 "Inside Job" tour, "it ain't there anymore. Even though it still has the same name. Even though the guy has my name on the menu. Don't go there!") "All She Wants to Do Is Dance" has a similar theme, focusing on corporate and political greed in general. "The Boys of Summer," musically based on a guitar riff supplied by Heartbreaker Mike Campbell, is a warning not to look back and romanticize the past but rather, to look toward the future - just keep your eyes open whatever you do, though, because if you're Driving With Your Eyes Closed "you're gonna hit somethin' ... but that's the way it goes."
As on all of his solo releases, Henley was able to secure the collaboration of a virtual all-star cast of musicians, from Fleetwood Mac's Lindsey Buckingham and Heartbreakers Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench to Randy Newman, Patty Smyth, Belinda Carlisle, Richard and Waddy Wachtel, Toto's Steve Porcaro and David Paich, "inofficial Eagle" J.D. Souther, and many, many more. And despite the seeming bow to the 1980s' musical tastes in the instrumentation of many of the album's tracks, their lasting quality becomes apparent like on no other occasion when Henley performs them live, as he did on his recently-concluded tour. Stripped of some of their fancy effects, they stand up even more visibly to the class of his other work, both with the Eagles and solo - and you just have to have heard that stunning, several minutes' long drum/percussion intro (not even performed by Henley himself) to "All She Wants to Do Is Dance," the closing song of the tour’s regular program.
"Building the Perfect Beast" cemented Don Henley's standing as a solo artist, and it paved the way for his biggest release to date, "End of the Innocence." As he had done with his bandmates a decade earlier, Henley again proved that he was able to create something lasting, in whatever format he chose. Maturity added more focus to his work (lyrically if nowhere else); and vocally, many of the tracks on this album are among the most demanding he has ever written. Unlike the output of the era's countless hair bands, disco kings and queens and punk bands, all of Don Henley's first three solo releases still have a large enough audience to warrant their inclusion in the catalogue of every major record store - including the seemingly so 1980s-sounding "Building the Perfect Beast."
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5.0 out of 5 stars Don at his best, 10 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
I'm a hardened Eagles fan & love Don's solo work. His voice is unique & amazing. Love every track of his.
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4.0 out of 5 stars still one of the god guys fgrom the Eagles., 30 Aug 2013
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A good selection of tracks, not as good in my opinion as "The end of the innocence" but on the whole sti;ll one for the collection, Long live the reformed Eagles.
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3.0 out of 5 stars perfect present, 22 July 2013
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i decide to purchase this album after my girlfriend heard boys of summer on Magic. and she really liked the song.
Lets just say shes very happy
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4.0 out of 5 stars Don Henley, 19 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
Love his solo stuff not many members of groups produce good solo albums - he does - boys of summer super big hit
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4.0 out of 5 stars An imperfect Perfect Beast, 10 Aug 2009
By 
K. M. Guppy (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Building The Perfect Beast (Audio CD)
Despite the now slightly dated production, this is still a minor classic, though not a through-and-through classic (see The End Of The Innocence) . Henley creates a hazy late-Summer aura, but ultimately leaves the listener with a bitter taste; a downbeat feeling of a Summer's promise slipping away. Well-placed superior hits The Boys of Summer, All She Wants To Do Is Dance, and Sunset Grill hold the album up, despite the proceedings seeming to peeter out by the end. Shame, but still definitely worth revisiting.
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