Actual Miles: Henleys Greatest Hits
1995: Geffen GEFD-24834
Usually I eschew greatest-hits collections, but in order to satisfy my craving for Henleys Sunset Grill and Dirty Laundry without taking on the load of everything else on their respective albums, and not being a Henley fan, I chose this safe path. It did yield an unexpected bonus in the form of The Garden of Allah, which as a song doesnt particularly stir me (and which contains all the standard Henley wry insights that annoy me after about the second onewe GET the POINT, Henley, get on with the MUSIC) but which contains a superb aural gem in the form of Sheryl Crows multitracked swell which forms the body of the choruses. Crows voice is oddly perfect for the tone of the song I wish it could have been further incorporated, or that the soundscape could have been expanded to further develop that lush hint of sensuous exultation. The latter, and the hot dark horn explosions of Sunset Grills wrapup, made this CD a worthwhile purchase for me.
I revisited this review a year or two after writing the above comments, and played the album again, and I found that I have nothing more to add except maybe that I wish Henley hadnt tried to sing so many notes so far above his voices natural range. Other than that, the elements I love remain the value of this piece: Dirty Laundry, Down At the Sunset Grill, Sheryl Crows vocal instrumentalization, and the dark horn explosions which truly are marvelous.
Comments © 2005 Mark Ellis Walker, except as noted, and no claim is made to the images and quoted lyrics.