Canadian (though technically American) sibling act Heart is one of those bands that has always been around, or so it seems. Despite the changing fads and musical styles, they always manage to keep up without compromising their distinct sound. So much so, that when you start to calculate all of their hits over the past few decades (“Magic Man,” “Dreamboat Annie,” “Barracuda,” “These Dreams,” “Never,” “What About Love,” among many others) it’s starts to dawn on you just how much of a cultural touchstone this band was for more than one generation.
As laid out in Strange Euphoria, an impressive three CD, one DVD box set, the band’s success ebbs and flows over the years, but they manage to remain relevant at least some of the time in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. Their songs, with big choruses and great, loud rock guitars, found an audience with the 70’s stadium rockers like Ted Nugent, Aerosmith and Journey, kept up with MTV’s hair metal-lite crowd in the Regan years (check out the dreadful hairspray look in their videos) and even managed to win over their adopted hometown crowd during Seattle’s Grunge heyday.
The box set, along with their hits and some lesser known tracks, includes plenty of live takes and several demos. The accompanying DVD is from a 1976 concert filmed for public TV in Washington state.
Ann and Nancy Wilson re-launched Heart in the 00’s, but never really had another big hit. But that shouldn’t take away from the songs that did hit big throughout most of their career. It also hasn’t stopped them from packing sheds across the country every summer with fans screaming for an encore of “Barracuda” and “Never”.