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Heart Unwrap ‘Strange Euphoria’ Box Set Before Finishing New Album ‘Fanatic’

Ann Wilson of Heart
Annie Zaleski, Ultimate Classic Rock

Heart are living the best of both worlds at the moment. The Wilson sisters are revisiting their past with particular attention and detail while prepping a new box set and also letting that spur the creativity for a new studio record.

 

Singer Ann Wilson tells Billboard that she’s thankful that the group has years of experience to pull from, which makes approaching both projects right next to each other less of a daunting task.

The first thing up for the band is the box set, ‘Strange Euphoria,’ which arrived earlier this week. It’s a CD/DVD collection that is bolstered by rare and unreleased outtakes as well as a 1976 concert taped for a Washington TV station. Included in the set are demos for such hits as ‘Magic Man,’ ‘Crazy on You,’ and ‘Dog & Butterfly,’ as well as the pre-Heart song ‘Through Eyes and Glass’ that was recorded as Ann Wilson & the Daybreaks.

Wilson says, “We’ve always wanted to put out a rarities collection. Going and finding them was really interesting. It’s not that easy. There’s so much stuff and you have to weed through it and find stuff that’s meaningful – not just rare but actually cool rare, so that took a while.”

Fresh off the extensive work of putting the ‘Strange Euphoria’ together, Wilson says that the group is wrapping up a new studio album. ‘Fanatic’ will be their 13th studio record and is expected to arrive this fall. The singer says the band recorded 20 tracks, but she expects it to be cut down by the time the final release arrives. She calls it “a pretty rock heavy” record, and mentions that one song, ‘Walking Good,’ features a guest appearance by Sarah McLachlan.

She adds, “There are only two ballads on it. It’s got a lot of edge. I just spent a lot of time riding around on a tour bus the last couple of years, just way out in the middle of the country where the poetry speaks really loud. I had a notebook. I wrote a song about Pennsylvania. There’s one about Vancouver. It’s a fiery bunch of words. There’s anger, there’s passion, that’s why it’s called ‘Fanatic,’ because it’s love fanatic.”

Wilson also revealed that a book in the works, but the next thing on their schedule is a summer tour. The band returns to the road June 29.

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