Being quite familiar with The Wallflowers' previous albums, I looked forward to "Rebel, Sweetheart" with much pleasurable expectation. This collection of songs is astonishing! Each song and soundscape paints a lyrical picture in the form of The Wallflowers' best work. Jakob Dylan has produced lyrics encompassing all the richness of experience; some common observations are made especially profound, as in "God Says Nothing Back" where Dylan expresses a sense of assured wonder in his views on God, time, love and death. Each song on this album is especially unique in that sense, and beyond those common ideas, the songs address the deeper themes of loneliness, yearning, human fallibility, and ultimately the power of persistence. We are sometimes redeemed by the narrator through the lyrics, though that happens especially often through the music. Notice how you might think "Hey, sounds like he means something different than how the music makes me feel about what I just heard..." An astonishing lyricist and band has given us so much! On "Rebel, Sweetheart" The Wallflowers take their influences and make something of their own better than so many other bands. Consider the final song, as "all things [become] new again", those new things are much like they were before. Only now, it's most important that we learn how to make the best of what's there through some hint of positive thinking. This positive light, you may notice in the song "From the Bottom of My Heart," is often hard to come by within the individual, though hopefully "we" could become a better group of individuals with a more positive inward light that translates into a better outlook on things. What is truly great about this collection, to an even greater degree than The Wallflowers' previous albums, is that each new listen allows you to explore ways of interpreting the lyrics while tapping your foot and moving to the music--a wonderfully seamless flow of great songs, filled with new possibility! Read the lyrics sometime while listening to the album; try different things. And "Rebel, Sweetheart" ought to sound amazing in 5.1 Surround--another rewarding experience for listeners with those capabilities, and probably the next best thing to experiencing The Wallflowers in concert. Yes! Buy this album!
5 tracks into this I was already mentally compiling a relatively negative review to this one. Then along came God says nothing back, and the whole direction of the album changed. The first few tracks aren't bad , just a little samey with a rather muddy production sound-think mediocre Tom Petty-the next 8,maybe with the exception of All things new again, are the ticket though. Overall then pretty damn good but not up to Bringing down the horse.
I chose this product as I love the wallflowers previous albums and wanted to complete my collection. Jakob Dylan is such a gifted songwriter, I listened to the album several time through when it arrived. The service was great too. I ordered it on the sunday and it arrived by Wednesday. Previously, I've had trouble when ordering online but this arrived sooner than expected and in great condition.
The first Wallflowers album I came across was the excellent 'Bringing Down The Horse' way back in 1996 (their second album). This cd, bought as part of a 2 for £9 Amazon deal (still waiting for the second cd after 2 months and counting by the way ), from 2005 is an easy listen but not too many standout tracks.