Roy Orbison - King of Hearts


TJR says:

Not in my collection.

The Pro review:

King of Hearts, posthumously released and with several tracks finished after Orbison’s death, will disappoint no-one. The final incarnation of the voice which, 25 years earlier, had compelled with it’s rendering of Pretty Woman, In Dreams and the like, is nothing short of bewildering. An other-wordly feel is present throughout, and not just because of the knowledge that Orbison is no more. From the bleak emotional landscape of "Love in Time" and the stunning "Wild Hearts" to the pumping rocker, "I Drove All Night", Orbison simmers on the edge of despair with as compelling a command of his voice as ever he had in his youth. While I personally prefer some of the early live recordings of "Crying" to the duet with kd laing on this CD, there is no doubt that the demo version of "Careless Heart" featured here tears strips off the somewhat half-hearted effort heard on "Mystery Girl". As the last track of his final album, Orbison transforms the song into an epic and the extended wail that closes it demonstrates on it’s own just why Orbison remains unsurpassed. Sure, there are a couple of substandard numbers; neither "Heartbreak Radio" nor "Coming Home" sit comfortably in the ethereal dreamscape suggested by the rest of the tracks. The abiding memory, however, is of an artist at the peak of his powers delivering songs which, if you happen to be listening to them in the dark, on your own, with maybe a drink inside you and, possibly, a broken heart to boot,will grab your soul and not let go. If you are already a fan, you will be delighted; if you are not, take it now…

5.0 / 5
A. Customer
Amazon (customer review)

Extra notes:

¹ King of Hearts is a posthumous album of Roy Orbison songs put together from master sessions and demos by Jeff Lynne for Virgin Records. Stemming from recordings 1985-1988 (mostly 1987), the collection was originally released in 1992 and a CD re-release appeared in 2007. Several individuals produced the various recordings including Lynne. They were: Don Was, David Was, Pete Anderson, Robbie Robertson, Will Jennings, David Briggs, Chips Moman, Guy Roche, Albert Hammond and Diane Warren. The album includes the duet version with k.d. lang of Orbison’s 1961 hit single, "Crying". "I Drove All Night" was another hit single from the album. The 2 reworkings from previous Orbison albums are "Crying" and "Careless Heart".
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The complete “A-list” discography of Roy Orbison:

At The Rock House (1961) Lonely and Blue (1961) Crying (1962) In Dreams (1963) There Is Only One Roy Orbison (1965) The Orbison Way (1966) The Classic Roy Orbison (1966) Roy Orbison Sings Don Gibson (1967) The Fastest Guitar Alive (1967) Cry Softly Lonely One (1967) Roy Orbison’s Many Moods (1969) Hank Williams The Roy Orbison Way (1970) Big O (1970) Roy Orbison Sings (1972) Memphis (1972) Milestones (1973) I’m Still In Love with You (1975) Regeneration (1977) Laminar Flow (1979) Mystery Girl (1989)

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