The Petty Archives

Recordings: Recent Releases
Review by Jon Pareles
The New York Times - April 30, 1989

Tom Petty: 'Full Moon Fever' MCA 6253, all three formats
The 1980's barely touched Tom Petty, who has stayed with chiming, country-tinged rock since the early 1970's; the only change is that now he enunciates lyrics more clearly. "Full Moon Fever," made without his regular band, the Heartbreakers (but with the Heartbreakers' guitarist, Mike Campbell), offers a slightly smoother fersion of Mr. Petty's usual strumming guitars and harmony choruses. The songs are concise and clam, built to sink in. Some proffer affectionate cliches: others are animated, behind the easy-rolling melodies, by a sullen, smoldering resentment that Mr. Petty brings to the surface in "I Won't Back Down."