Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - Unvarnished (CD Review)

01.Any Weather
03.Soulmates To Strangers
04.Make It Back
05.Hard To Grow Up
07.Reality Mentality
08.Bad As We Can Be
10.Everybody Needs A Hero

Joan Jett (Guitar/Vocals)
Thommy Price (Drums)
Dougie Needles (Guitar)
Acey Slade (Bass)

Guest Musicians:
Dave Grohl (All Instruments : Any Weather)
Laura Jane Grace (Vocals : Soulmates To Strangers)

Returning after a lengthy break Joan Jett has recorded and album with a more serious tone covering topics from losing loved ones to Hurricane Sandy, social media and bullying.

Staring with 'Any Weather', Co-written with Dave Grohl (who plays bass and guitar as well as drums on the track!) and recorded in his 606 studio. Has a typical catchy melody and chorus that you would expect from both of them.

'TMI', a song that begins with the trademark drumbeat and turns into quite an infectious song, the subject matter deals with the "seriousness" of sharing too much on social media, not sure thats a huge deal after all nobody is forced to use such sites, but hey ho its a good song anyway.

Laura Jane Grace from Against Me co-wrote 'Soulmates To Strangers' and sounds like Joan is duetting with Courtney Love.

The destruction that Hurricane Sandy brught is the subject of the the groove-laden 'Make It Back'.

Personal sentiments with the next two tracks 'Hard To Grow Up' and 'Fragile', kinda hard songs to review when they deal with subjects of lost friends, relatives and pets, in what Joan has dubbed her "decade of death".

'Reality Mentality' is about reality television and how America (and most other countries) are obsessed with it.

'Bad As We Can Be' has a Ramones vibe whilst 'Different' has that old anthemic glam rock sound and finally 'Everybody Needs A Hero' is a pretty average ballad written by Kenny Laguna.

Rating 8/10
For Fans Of : Ramones, The Donnas, Hole, L7


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