Live Review: Ageless Heart Shatters the Roof in Atlantic City

Published on January 27th, 2013

575Heart performs on January 26, 2013 at Caesars Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Halfway through a scorching performance from Heart sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson, now supporting their 14th studio album ‘Fanatic’, a certain disbelief begins to set in.

Could they both be so unaffected by the years passed since their formation in 1976? Aside from their still-stunning looks, it’s obvious there has been no loss of vocal power. In her fifth decade of performing, Ann Wilson might be expected to hold back here and there when it comes to the biggest notes of the Heart catalog. She certainly wouldn’t be faulted for it.

Instead, she takes a joy in delivering each note to its fullest, wearing a smile of ease.

They’re performing ‘Crazy on You’, and Nancy Wilson is at her sister’s side, kicking, thrusting, and jumping with her guitar in hand.

To state the age of these two sisters would be almost irrelevant given how little of it they display.

But it wasn’t a night of “just the hits” for these fans gathered at the conspicuous Caesars casino along Atlantic City’s famous boardwalk. This is the ‘Fanatic’ tour after all, and there are new tunes to be heard.

Producing two albums in just as many years with this latest set, the creative juices clearly haven’t stopped flowing for the Wilsons and company.

Three songs were chosen from the new work. The title driving track “Fanatic” was an obvious selection, but equally deserving was its guitar-heavy counterpart “Dear Old America”, a song the sisters proudly wrote and dedicated to their father. Add in “59 Crunch”, and you have a trio of songs that contain perhaps the heaviest guitar riffs Heart has ever produced during their lengthy career.

Nancy Wilson relished each note of the new material along with her guitar-wielding counterpart across the stage, Craig Bartock.

But it’s not to say there wasn’t as much enjoyment on display during the classic songs, a la “Barracuda” and “Alone”. They are given slight updates for the live setting while retaining all of their original nature.

The sisters are musicians to the core, and they’ve climbed to the peak of their craft. Despite all the fame accumulated, they still manage to be genuinely humbled by their fans and the entire experience of performing. It’s a refreshing quality.

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