The Bangles are back with their first studio album in eight years, and while their new LP may sound like a 60s summer vacation, Susanna Hoffs, Vicki Peterson and Debbi Peterson certainly don’t sound as though they’ve been on hiatus. The ladies’ harmonies are as beautifully woven as they were nearly three decades ago on their new album, Sweetheart Of The Sun. So close your eyes, give us your hand and head below as we preview The Bangles’ latest release in our Fall Music Preview.
ALBUM: Sweetheart Of The Sun (Model Music Group).
RELEASE DATE: September 27
SINGLES RELEASED SO FAR: “I Will Never Be Through With You”. Take a listen here:
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ALBUM PRODUCERS: The album is produced by The Bangles, and co-produced by Matthew Sweet (and actually recorded in Matthew’s home studio). Matthew and Susanna had previously collaborated on Under The Covers Vol. 1 and Under The Covers Vol. 2 under the moniker Sid N Susie after meeting on Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me — directed by the songstress’ husband Jay Roach. (Just a little info for you pop culture buffs to bust out during your next game of Trivial Pursuit.)
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE LP: Expect to be transported, but not back to the 1980s. The music of Sweetheart Of The Sun is as wistful as the album’s title, and the trio remained inspired by their Cali roots. Guitarist Vicki Peterson explains, “As we were finishing the record we started to realize there was a unifying theme — paradise lost in Southern California.” Susanna, a fellow LA native, continues the thought: “The sun shines 360 days a year… but meanwhile, so many people are walking around alienated, depressed and anxious.”
The LP also includes two covers: Todd Rundgren’s “Open My Eyes” and the more obscure Carter-Lewis And The Southerners “Sweet And Tender Romance”. If you’re anticipating a the hard and loud reinterpretation similar to the ladies’ 1987 take on Simon & Garfunkle’s “Hazy Shade Of Winter”, don’t; it’s far more of a hazy, lazy Saturday afternoon.
TOUR PLANS: The trio is currently on tour with over a dozen dates this coming October and November. (Check out their a full schedule here.)
OUR THOUGHTS: While summer is officially over, Sweetheart is perfect to put on for that warm Indian Summer night, or for a drive down the Cali coast with the top down. Die hard Bangles devotees might initially feel something is amiss with the absence of former bassist Michael Steele, but we think fans will embrace that the group has allowed their sound to evolve and grow right along with their audience.