Back in 1991 we were so fortunate, there was a gush of outstanding rock albums, many are still the most sought after and renowned, thirty years later. We all bought a copy of ‘Lean Into It’ with the iconic cover photo of the Montparnasse train disaster. It must have been one of the most played albums that year. This second Mr Big album also brought to our attention the sheer brilliance of the band, who despite a mass of competition, have managed to stay permanent fixtures in our hearts. I believe they were one of the most underrated outfits of that decade, they could have reached the highest of levels, suffice to say they have now earned the respect they deserve. Virtuosos Billy Sheehan on bass and guitarist Paul Gilbert are both musicians that even the most eminent performers, still hold in the highest regard.
Yes, I saw Mr Big live, it was Wolverhampton Civic Hall, back in the day. Since then I have seen Paul Gilbert on his solo tour and Billy with Sons of Apollo, Winery Dogs and with Tony MacAlpine, wow that was some show. A few years ago, the ever youthful Eric Martin played a superb gig down at the Iron Road in Evesham, all these endeavours and ventures, just prove what an extraordinary line up Mr Big consists of. Sadly drummer Pat Torpey passed away in 2018, gone but never forgotten, he was also a remarkable musician.
The original ‘Lean into it’ had 11 tracks and reached 15 in the Billboard 200 charts. The album had several stand out tracks ‘Daddy, Brother, Lover, Little Boy ( The Electric Drill Song ) was way ahead of the times, Gilbert and Sheehan using cordless drills on the strings, to perform a faster than human hands duet. ‘Alive And Kickin’ and ‘Green Tinted Sixties Mind’ are timeless classics, full of engaging melodies and harmonies and it’s just impossible not to sing along. ‘CDFF Lucky This Time’ is a version of ‘Addicted To That Rush’ from the debut album. Cleverly thought out, CDFF is the chord pattern, the letters stand for ‘Compact Disc Fast Forward’ as this was a much quicker take on the Jeff Paris composition. More guitar splendour on ‘Voodoo Kiss’ and the ballad ‘Just Take My Heart’ is so emotional. ‘A Little Too Loose’ leans on a more sleazy route and the album ends on the number one single ‘To Be With You’.
In 2021 marketing is so different, what started out as a vinyl record and CD in 1991, is now being celebrated 30 years later, in an array of formats. I know there is an extended version already available, but the team have really pulled out all the stops for this anniversary edition. In total you can hear over 24 songs, the packages include remastered and previously unheard session tracks and box sets of singles. There is also the rare addition of ‘Wild Wild Women’ and ‘Stop Messing Around’ the latter being a session song from the time, that didn’t make the album. Acoustic and demo versions are also available, with some leaving off the guitar and bass, so it’s possible to jam along. There’s an enhanced mix using the latest technology and you can even get surround sound ! Find all the details on the bands Facebook page and you can pre-order on the link below.
‘The team have really pulled out all the stops for this anniversary edition’
Pre order HERE
NOTE – Mr Big have had to change the release date of the LEAN INTO IT Coloured Vinyl LP (Red, Transparent Red, White) to November 2021. They are disappointed but more details to come!