Just to let you know, this is now available only as a pro-pressed CD-R. I opened my copy today and was a bit miffed, though it sounds decent. Just full price is not worth a pro-pressed CD-R,….
The hit vocalist’s fifth & sixth studio albums together on one CD. Respectively released on Chrysalis in 1984 & 1985, the platinum ’Tropico’ reached #14 & ’Seven The Hard Way’ peaked at #26. The two offer a combined total of 19 tracks, including the top five ’We Belong’, the top 10 ’Invincible’,the top 40 hits ’Sex As A Weapon’ & ’Ooh Ooh Song’, and the single ’Le Bel Age’. All tracks are digitally remastered from the original master tapes. Also features the original cover art of each record, plus additional sleeve notes. 1998 release.
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This British two-fer is a very good collection, sans the editing choices. I never bought these albums when they originally came out because I was a little kid, though my older sister did own “Heat”, “Crimes”, and “Precious Time.” I never heard the original versions, so I don’t know how much I’m missing: You can tell that “Diamond Field” is cut off before it could be over, which is unfortunate…other reviewers are correct, good song, great vocals! “We Belong” we all know about…”Painted Desert”, excellent song (great guitar intro by Neil Geraldo), why wasn’t this a single?! “Temporary Heroes” great vocals…there are no bad songs on the album…”The Outlaw” has great guitar work and vocals…”Suburban King” seems like probably the most shortened song in the group, still, what’s here is good to listen to…This album, “Tropico” also has to have the best cover art of all the Benatar albums. I love evocative, theatrical covers like that (don’t think I’ve ever seen an album with an owl on the cover); the liner notes say it’s “Kate Bush-like”; to me, it’s more “Stevie Nicks-like” — look at “Belladonna”, then look at “Tropico.” Surprised that more hits didn’t come from the album. It’s a mellower album, and a welcome change from the concertedly- “New Wave” “Get Nervous”(still, a pretty good album)…it was good that Pat went for a more adult-contemporary, pop-rock route, which expanded her range…remember, people, she was not originally training for Rock N’ Roll at Julliard. Note: The one drawback of the Brit. Two-fers is that they don’t feature lyrics for both albums…only the first album, “Tropico” gets printed lyrics, due to lack of CD space, which is so annoying for any music lovers in to lyrics, or what the singer was saying. But, that’s better than the great new domestic remasters (mindblowing sound!) that don’t feature any lyrics whatsoever, WHY??? The sound is great for both albums. “Seven The Hard Way” is just as good an album, but more rocking…Pat’s voice doesn’t age from 1979 to 1985 at all, it’s only stronger! Highlights, “Le Bel Age”, “Walking…Underground” “Seven Rooms” (Note, this song was probably covered, at the suggestion of Mike Chapman, since he was already familiar with Blondie’s live cover from the 70s (who he was producing while working with Pat), not an attempt at falling back on R&B because she was at a loss of what to do.) Yet, again, the b-sides or album tracks are just as good, if not better than the singles released, remember that. Enjoy!
WHAT CAN I SAY ABOUT THE INCREDIBLE PAT BENATAR?THIS CD INCLUDES 19 SONGS THAT ARE WORTH EVERY PENNY,FROM HER ALBUMS TROPICO & SEVEN THE HARD WAY..BEST TUNES ARE….WE BELONG–OOH OOH SONG–7 ROOMS OF GLOOM–LE BEL AGE–SEX AS A WEAPON–INVINCIBLE(FROM THE LEGEND OF BILLIE JEAN)PAT BENATAR HAS A UNIQUE VOICE..THE TRUE QUEEN OF ROCK-IN MY EYES-ALL HER CDS ARE A KEEPER..
The amalgamation of these two best selling Benatar albums not only affords nostalgia at a cheaper price for Pat fans who have her albums on vinyl, but also offers the more general fan a greater opportunity to cast a glimpse at a section of La Benatar’s more crediible work. Tropico marks a less rocky path for Pat and her band, with the honey-drenched ballad We Belong and the reflectively mature Painted Desert. Heavey guitars have been swapped in this album for a more pop/aor feel, which convincingly works without Pat relegating her trademark sound. Other top trax include on this album In A Crazy World Like This & Temporary Heroes, which were Top 10 pop hits waiting to happen. Seven The Hard Way, Pat’s 7th album is by far her best to date, and packs an immediate punch with the likes of anti-commercial pornography in Sex As A Weapon and the top 10 The from the Legend of Billie King, Invincible. 7 is a powerfully animated affair and strikes iron with Pat’s seismic vocal prowess that leaves you in exhaustion. Top toons of the album are Big Life, with its confident guitar riff and the cover 7 rooms of gloom, which has it all: electric, racing guitars, a fiery brass section, a forceful backing band and a rip-roaring performance by Pat who LIVES the song.Even the album’s more paced moments are not without interest. Run Between The Raindrops is a pensive look at life and inspired by the birth of Pat & Neil’s first daughter, Haley, and Walking In The Underground is a bluesy and dark track which reflects the darkness of the song’s theme, and builds into a fantastic crescendoed harmony by Pat. An absoltely brilliant album which alone is worth buying this double cd. Pat Benatar still lives to be a true inspiration to many & a legend whose musical talent is perfectly encapsualted in this package. Oustanding.
La Bel Age loses a whole minute!!!! Painted Desert is 20 seconds shorter than on the original CD, and Invincible is 10 seconds shorter. The bonus track, Love is a Battlefield, it is the 7″ version, not the full length version on her Live from Earth CD (this due to the fact that Love is a Battlefield was released at a very different time overseas, and this import matches that version of the releases). They should have just left it off the CD and given us back the time stolen from the other tracks!!! What a bummer. Otherwise, I’m all for this 2 in 1 compilation idea.