Picks and Pans Review: Let Me Up (i've Had Enough)

updated 06/08/1987 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 06/08/1987 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

The odd fellows down at the Fraternal Order of Rock Musicians are going to be livid with Tom Petty. With Let Me Up he has made his lodge brothers look bad by violating a cardinal rule: No album shall be released unless 80 percent of it is composed of going-through-the-motions filler. Petty's latest, flouting this tradition, is loaded wall-to-wall with good songs. From A Self-Made Man, which resembles a Southern-fried Kinks' tune, to the alienated punk sensibility that informs My Life/Your World, the writing is self-assured and consistent. Petty's increasingly Dylan-esque singing style sounds best when he's griping in those put-upon songs that reflect the album title. His tone is appropriately snide on the single Jammin' Me as he complains of cable TV saturation: "Take back Vanessa Redgrave/ Take back Joe Piscopo/ Take back Eddie Murphy/ Give 'em all someplace to go." The Heartbreakers' accompaniment throughout is forceful yet relaxed and superbly understated. As an example, listen to Mike Campbell drench the folkish It'll All Work Out in a sun shower of mandolin notes. Better still, listen to the whole album. (MCA)

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