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SuperHeavy [Deluxe Edition]

4.1 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Deluxe edition includes four bonus tracks. Highly anticipated 2011 album from this supergroup featuring Mick Jagger, Dave Stewart, Joss Stone, Damian Marley and Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack composer A. R. Rahman. This diverse and eclectic line up who share 11 Grammy Awards between them, have been recording together in various studios around the world, with the majority of the tracks on the project laid down over three weeks in Los Angeles earlier this year. Tracks include the first single `Miracle Worker', plus `One Day One Night', `Energy', `Unbelievable,' `SuperHeavy,' I Can't Take It No More,' `You're Never Gonna Change' and `I Don't Mind.'

About the Artist

Mick Jagger has teamed up with Eurythmics founder Dave Stewart, soul singer Joss Stone, Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack composer A.R.Rahman and reggae star Damian Marley to form a band cooperative project called SuperHeavy. This diverse and eclectic line up who share eleven Grammy Awards between them, have been recording together in various studios around the world, with the majority of the tracks on the project laid down over three weeks in Los Angeles earlier this year. The album will be unveiled in September and tracks include the first single `Miracle Worker', plus `One Day One Night', `Energy', `Unbelievable,' `SuperHeavy,' I Can't Take It No More,' `You're Never Gonna Change' and `I Don't Mind.'

A promo video for `Miracle Worker' will be shot later this month and will feature Jagger, Stewart, Marley, Stone and Rahman.

It's little wonder that Stewart refers to SuperHeavy as, "A mad alchemist type experiment". Fusing the talents of one of the greatest front-men of all time, a two time Academy award winning Indian composer, a soul vocal prodigy, a three time Grammy winning reggae star, and one of the most sought after producers in the world, you would expect the explosive results to defy categorisation.

SuperHeavy came together after Jagger and Stewart considered what a band comprising of musicians from different genres would sound like. Jagger explains, "Dave really wanted to make a record with a different group of musicians, in other words, with different backgrounds of music. Instead of everyone being a rock musician, or basically a blues musician, or some other genre, he wanted to get as many genres together that would fit. I said it sounds like a good idea, I never thought it would actually happen."

Yet soon enough Jagger found himself back in the studio with Stewart and Joss Stone, having previously worked together on the 2004 Alfie movie soundtrack. Stewart says Stone was, "an obvious choice for us. She's such an incredible singer and spirit." Stewart and Jagger's dream team took further shape when they were inspired to bring Damian Marley into the mix, says Stewart, "We'd always wanted a Jamaican musician because Mick and I are crazy about Jamaica and Jamaican music. Stewart has worked with legend Jimmy Cliff while Mick has duetted with Peter Tosh from the Wailers on the Tempatations tune "Don't Look Back" in 1978.

We were listening to loads of stuff and suddenly a light bulb went off and we thought about Damian Marley." Jagger had long been a fan of Marley's, fresh from another cross-genre collaboration with American rapper Nas, citing his strength as a lyricist and toaster along with his penchant for experimentation and collaborative spirit. Marley brought on board his rhythm section, bassist and composer Shiah Coore and drummer Courtney Diedrick, while Stewart introduced the band to his long-term collaborator Ann Marie Calhoun, a rock violinist who had previously worked with the Foo Fighters.

Recording in LA meant the band's path crossed with legendary Indian composer A.R. Rahman, in the City of Angels fresh from his Slumdog Millionaire Oscar glory. Jagger explains, "We didn't know what kind of music we'd make, we didn't know if it would be any good, but we hoped we'd have fun." They were thrilled to have Rahman on board, Stewart says, "He brings so much musical knowledge, amazing musicianship, melody and singing power from a different culture."

Despite their disparate backgrounds, they instantly connected and hit the ground running, writing twenty-two songs in the first six days. Stone was thrilled with the results, "That's what you need, all these opinionated people who have been brilliant in their own field, shove them together and see what comes out. It's really unexpected, it's mind blowing" she enthuses. Similarly enthused was Rahman, "The first day I was in a daze thinking, `What am I doing? What's my role?' and then slowly we started writing with each other, and it was great. It took me way back to my high school days when I was playing in a rock band, but this one was a real one!" Jagger says of the writing process, "We ran the gamut of all our different styles mixed up, so we got Joss singing, Damian doing toasting, and me singing different styles."

However, despite the free flow of creative juices and the easy rapport they established, getting the band together in one place became very difficult, as Stewart explains, "It's the most complicated record ever made. Imagine, some of it's recorded in LA, some of it's recorded in the South of France, some of it's recorded off the coast of Cyprus, some of it's recorded in Turkey, some of it's recorded in Miami, some of it's recorded in the Caribbean, and some of it's recorded in Chennai, in India."

The project needed a name. Marley had been riffing the term "SuperHeavy", inspired by Muhammad Ali being the super heavy weight champion of the world and the phrase became the band's catchphrase, "It was Mick who said, `Why don't we call it SuperHeavy?", recalls Stewart, "We all thought about it for ages and then it sort of stuck."

SuperHeavy is a new and spontaneous way of working for all the collaborators as Jagger explains, "I said to Dave, normally [with the Stones] we'd always have written songs before we go into the studio, but the jam sessions resulted in some great work believes Stone, "It felt better when we were just jamming, that way we made it up as we went along and it was easy."

The band found a harmonious way of working together, "With five of you everyone has to give and take quite a lot. We tried to understand everyone wouldn't be too egotistical, start throwing things around the studio, we wouldn't have fights!" says Jagger. However they weren't averse to telling each other to be better either, Jagger continues, "We were writing a lot of stuff and throwing it away. I would say, `That's rubbish, another cliché Joss', and she'd say, `Well you come up with something then!'" The experience was refreshing and exciting for the band, "We're four vocalists, we've never worked like that before. It's great because the whole burdens not on you, and that made it fun." Jagger enthuses.

Back to that alchemical experiment, Jagger, Stewart, Marley, Rahman and Stone appear to have created a new genre. It's a new kind of music, it's a new genre, one that cannot be placed" says Stone. Yet, Jagger is keen to point out the music is accessible, "It's very approachable. If you're a Rolling Stones fan there's definitely stuff you can relate to. Other stuff that you can't relate to so much, maybe if you listen you'll enjoy it."

A first for Mick Jagger is singing in Urdu, on a song composed by Rahman, entitled "Satyameva Jayate", meaning, "the truth alone triumphs", Rahman wrote the song after some gentle teasing from the others. Rahman explains, "In the daytime I was playing with them, in the night time and evenings I was gigging" "Then", says Jagger, "He didn't come into the studio one day, so I said, `Where's A.R?' and he came in really late at night, really pleased saying, `I've got my song!' I manage one line in Urdu, only one!"

Marley's way of working was different to the rest of the band. Stone reveals, "Damian is kind of quiet but he has some brilliant ideas. He works on stuff at night. Sometimes he'll just go away and sit with the lyrics and bring something to it. His rhythm section brings so much. He has his own thing going in the next room so I pop in and out." Marley would work on toasting over the record by himself and re-join the band when he was happy with it.

As far as the future of SuperHeavy goes, "We haven't planned to do a tour or anything, but if people really like it maybe we will. We'd love to get out and play some of it live," says Jagger humbly. "As soon as we started playing together in the studio it gelled, and all these different styles didn't seem to be a problem to make them fit together... I hope people will like it...."

Main Credits on the `SuperHeavy' album are - Mick Jagger (vocals, guitar and harmonica), Dave Stewart (guitar), Joss Stone (vocals), Damian Marley (vocals) and A. R. Rahman (vocals plus a variety of keyboards).

The SuperHeavy album is co-produced by Jagger & Stewart.

Universal Music will release the album worldwide on their A& M label imprint.

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Digital Booklet: Super Heavy
Digital Booklet: Super Heavy
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 20, 2011)
  • deluxe_edition edition
  • Original Release Date: 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Republic
  • ASIN: B005HI7MZG
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #108,385 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Kind of a 21st century version of Travelin' Wilburys this interesting project brings together 5 artists rooted in quite different areas. From superstar Mick Jagger to more 'alternative' third world musicians like Damian Marley and Indian composer A. R. Rahman.

What makes the record so succesful is actually the dominant role of Marley and Rahman. Marley's rhythm section provides a heavy reggae atmosphere through out while Rahman's elegant orchestrations add depth and beauty. Jagger is absolutely on top of his game while Dave Steward's always intelligent guitarplaying binds everything together. And even if Joss Stone might be struggling a bit to keep up with 'the guys' she provides the needed feminine touch.

Seems as if many people will love to hate this group but in fact it's a suprisingly artistic and un-commercial album. Filled with strong songs - although the obvious 'hit' might be missing - and an abundance of unusual ideas and arrangements. While perhaps in the long run this will only be a small footnote to the legend of The Rolling Stones it's actually a very creative and well executed experiment.
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The major work of the 21st century music? It's possible. Mick Jagger has launched a new challenge with Friends (He works with Dave since Ruthless people (25 years), with Joss since Alfie (5 or 6 years); he knew Damian before he walk (Remember the famous poster: Mick, hilarious with Peter Tosh and Bob Marley in 1981 when the Wailers opened for the Stones), and composer AR Rahman (Slumdog) which sold in India as much music as the Anglo-Saxon artists sold on the planet.) The collective share both the pleasure to give everything, and, it's really crazy enough ! Improvisation mastered all these monsters playing, singing, whispering, blending their harmonies in heaven. Beauty, pleasure, energy and sensuality. No ego takes over. The roots of each going on the relay, boosting each other and lead us to heaven. Influences reggae, rock, electro, Hindu don't bring us another world music cd (usually too artificial and ...already released in the sixties with paint it black ...) but, to dynamic dancing and close hymns,(the voice of Mick for yourself), sometimes mystical and timeless imagination. Dave Stewart conductor finally transcends his dream of collaboration with the ultimate artist (Mick Jagger whom the frustrated critics do like regularly beat his wonderful solo work. They'll all be in their grave when a generation'll discover the artist beyond the boundaries the Stones are.) For pity's sake, take the Deluxe. The songs are not, only bonus, but pieces necessary for the ambition and cohesion of the work.
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As an older music fan, I've never been the least impressed with anything even remotely rap or hip-hop in nature but Marley adds a reggae rhythm that makes it not just tolerable but enjoyable. Kudos to Mick and Dave for taking on so bold a project! It certainly works. Loved just about every number right out of the starting gate!
What you should be aware going in is this is not a "Rolling Stones" album, ditto anything by the other artists you've been used to. This is a unique and enjoyable blend of these artists who while very different work well together. It's new and refreshing and I'd give it more than five stars if I could!
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DELUXE VERSION REVIEW - This album has been getting trashed in a lot of the initial reviews, so I wanted to listen to "Superheavy" carefully before reviewing. Sure, there are some dud tracks, but the great thing is that we can make playlists of the songs that we like and drop the ones that we don't. If I was forced to listen to the album from beginning to end every time, my rating would be lower, for sure. But overall, I think it's very enjoyable.

I don't really care for "Satyameva Jayathe" as it sounds like a weak New Pornographers song, "Mahiya" is just annoying to me, "World Keeps Turning" is dull and unexceptional, and I think "Never Gonna Change" is just horrible. But if I leave those four songs off my playlist, I still have a dozen tracks that I like a lot.

I can see why some people might be put off by the great range of styles here. It's a lot like a stew. If you really dislike one or two (or more) of the ingredients in a stew, you're probably not going to take to it right away, if at all. So, if you don't like Indian music or Jamaican music or soul or rock, each time those styles pop up it's going to be off-putting and distracting. For me, it works much more often than not. When I got used to the eclectic sound, it clicked very well.

All the musicians sound inspired for the most part. Joss Stone struggles to find a place in some tracks, but in others she's a nice element in the mix that doesn't detract from the overall sound.

The indian music by A.R. Rahman probably is the most awkward fit in my opinion, since the two songs that spotlight him the most are among the songs I like the least. But I'm sure he brings a lot of rhythm and musicality to the other tracks that I like very much.
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Confused? I don't blame you. This is an eclectic, high-energy fusion of voices and instruments by the Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, neo-soul singer Joss Stone, reggae toaster Damian Marley (son of Bob Marley), "Slumdog Millionaire" composer A. R. Rahman, and Eurythmics cofounder Dave Stewart, who also acts as producer. With three British performers and two from the former colonies of Jamaica and India, it's very much a Commonwealth supergroup.

They come together to create a hard-driving, deep-grooving sonic experiment, one I find both intriguing and rewarding. But the album doesn't alternate between genres; every song is a mélange of rock guitars and drums, soul and reggae vocals and bass, and Bollywood production, with each singer taking turns. Instruments as diverse as violin, piano, harmonica, organ, synthesizer, and tabla join in to create a broad palette of sound. There's even a song in Hindi.

Jagger's vocals dominate the proceedings. He often sings lead, while Stone duets with him and Marley, who contributes regular reggae interludes. The thick, complex orchestrations by Rahman and Stewart change tone with every track. If there's any complaint to be made, it's that there's too much in the mix. Each song is a five-course meal.

If you come to this project with expectations raised by any one of the prominent names attached to it, you're bound to be disappointed. It ain't the Stones, though particular songs may remind you of them, nor is it a rock or reggae or soul album. My advice: approach it with an open mind. Trust the professionals. Let them take control and you'll find yourself drawn further and further into the music.

There are two versions of the CD. The deluxe edition with a black-and-white cover features four additional tracks -- over 15 extra minutes of music including another Hindi song -- all of which make worthy additions and more than justify a slightly higher price.
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SuperHeavy [Deluxe Edition]
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