Tom Petty hits the mark with his most recent album Hypnotic Eye. He has never tried so hard to sound like himself and this is a good thing. The Heartbreakers are in fine form, with Mike Campbell’s guitar standing out during the band’s tight-knit jams.
The album starts strong with “American Dream Plan B” and loses no steam in channeling Petty’s best work, with bluesy and even jazzy (“Full Grown Boy”) jams as the backdrop for his deliberately tangled vocals and cleverly rhyming lyrics.
If there is a weakness to the album, it would be that it musically seems more intent on rehashing past hits than inventing anything new. Interestingly, though, Petty helps define his own distinct sounds and sharpen the clarity of his legacy by focusing more on copying his own sound than attempting to derive from others.
Overall, these are enjoyable, catchy songs to rock out to, propelled by quality songwriting and top musicianship.