At last year's Illinois State Fair appearance, Heart proved yet again why it's an unstoppable musical force. Guitarist Nancy Wilson, forever an underappreciated talent, shredded like a metal god — even when playing an acoustic — while sister Ann was a tornadic presence demolishing the high notes on "Crazy On You" and a cover of the Who's "Love, Reign O'er Me." This year's Red Velvet Car, Heart's first studio album in six years and thirteenth full-length overall, is a mellower affair; evocative strings and woodsy acoustic strums substitute for glossy rock excess or bulldozing riffs. But Ann's voice — which is a bit more weathered, like a fine aged wine — suits the smokier numbers. Zeppelin-esque blues and mature power-pop dominate, and dreamy highlight "Sunflower" is a sun-kissed slice of psych pop.
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