Title - 'Hi Infidelity: 30 Anniversary Edition' (Legacy)
Artist - REO Speedwagon
Hi Infidelity is the ninth studio album by REO Speedwagon. Released in December 1980 it went on to become the biggest selling rock album of 1981, eventually selling over ten million copies. Indeed, it was the Billboard 200 #1 album for fifteen weeks!
Amazingly further, six (6) songs from this album hit Billboard charts, including 'Keep On Loving You' (which was the band's first #1 hit) and 'Take It On the Run,' which reached #5 on the charts.
Legacy Recordings has now decided to celebrate the monumental success of Hi Infidelity, an album that came to define arena rock 30 years ago this year, by remastering this classic record. Not only that, they have also added a second disc of never-before-released studio demos of 9 of these historic tracks.
So, is this 30th Anniversary Edition album, spread onto 2 discs, worthy of having in your REO collections? No. The reasons being that a) the original album on the first disc sounds like it always has, and b) the second disc of demos is weak, lacklustre and once heard will never be played again!
Indeed, the first CD, the original album remastered, begins with the drums of 'Don't Let Him Go' before we're into the classic, world-renowned REO song, 'Keep On Loving You.' The guitar-laden 'Follow My Heart' is next, with the poppy-boppy. '60s inspired 'In Your Letter' following close behind.
The powerhaus 'Take It On The Run' is next with a great spoken-word intro from 'The Little Rascals' that intro's 'Tough Guys.' Then comes the MOR 'Out Of Season' and fun 'Shakin' It Loose.' The disc is completed by both 'Someone Tonight' and 'I Wish You Were There.'
Disc two, the previously-unreleased Crystal Demos starts with 'Someone Tonight' (a less guitar-heavy version), before 'Tough Guys' (without the intro), and by-the-book versions of both 'In Your Letter' and 'Follow My Heart.'
A noticeably weaker 'Take It On The Run' shows why the guitars were wisely added, before a not-much-changed 'Don't Let Him Go.' A so-much-tamer 'Keep On Loving You' is next, a song that whoever told them to 'amp it up' should have been given a Grammy to himself, before an instrumental version of 'Shakin' It Loose.' The disc is brought to a close in much the same fashion as the original album with 'I Wish You Were Here.'