Joe Walsh 'Analog Man'
Date:Monday, May 14, 2012
Review By: Thom Jennings
It has been twenty years since Joe Walsh released his last solo album, the unfairly overlooked "Songs for a Dying Planet." Twenty years later Walsh is finally set to release "Analog Man," an album of Walsh originals that sound familiar musically and unfamiliar lyrically.
It is evident after listening to "Analog Man," that the man who once had a hard time leaving a party because he couldn't find the door, has found personal peace in his home life. On "Lucky That Way" Joe sings, "got a good woman and she makes me happy," with sincerity instead of the sardonic wit displayed on so many of his songs.
On "Family," he takes it further and sings "I've finally found a wife and a home and a family that matters." While that may seem sappy to rock purists, the song conveys a warmth and sincerity that Walsh has never displayed, and that is refreshing. As far as ballads go, "Family" is easily as good as anything his Eagle band mates have written, and may be even more heartfelt.
One can assume that Walsh's audience has matured in the twenty years between solo albums, and many of them may have conquered the same personal demons that haunted Walsh. They likely aren't looking for another song about speedy Maseratis or guys that trash hotel rooms. In turn, they will find a lot to love about "Analog Man."
While it may not be the best of his ten solo albums, "Analog Man" sounds the most hopeful and Joe's guitar playing has never sounded better, from the chicken pickin' funk on "Funk 50" to the great slide work on "Hi-Roller Baby." It also sounds as if Joe can finally say that life has been good to him, because he has discovered what makes life good.