Review Summary: Mojo may have been successful had it been released in 1960, but at the current time is a monotonous collection of songs that appear to be behind the times.
To be frank, age is taking its toll on our favorite throwback musicians, an unavoidable facet that more often than not, should end careers. With very few exceptions, our classic heroes have been out harming their reputations rather than quitting whilst at the peak of their profession. The Rolling Stones have been well out of their prime for decades, not to mention Mick Jagger looks more and more like a walking corpse every day out on the stage. Even the Who yielded mixed results to say the least with their performance at this year’s Super Bowl, missing two indispensible band members and the youthful energy that so adamantly defined them. I’m not saying Tom Petty applies directly to this; he and the Heartbreakers have not really been a commodity for some time, with the release of only The Last DJ
in the past decade. Petty’s work with the Heartbreakers has traditionally been some of his strongest material in both a commercial and objective sense, yielding such albums as Full Moon Fever
and the self-titled debut. Unfortunately for Petty and crew, those albums were released a long time ago, and age has been taking its toll.
is Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ flirtation with blues music; a 64-minute, 15-track release littered with Stevie Ray Vaughn-esque leads and a laid-back atmosphere. Lead guitarist Mike Campbell is the saving grace of the record; his presence is undoubtedly the most formidable and significant of any other member of the group. The aforementioned statement is clarified within the opening seconds of “Jefferson Jericho Blues,” a 50’s throwback piece driven by both guitars and harmonica. The music is notable in that it is cohesively crafted, if only for the fact that the band demonstrates tremendous chemistry. This does not save the record however, for Petty’s vocals prove to be one of the several pitfalls of Mojo
, revealing an aged and unexciting front man to say the least. It is as though Petty had opted to go through the motions rather than pour his heart and soul into the record, which is not the type of thing that flies after an eight year absence. The issue of the vocals is only aggravated by clichéd and incredibly generic songwriting, which can be drawn directly from “Don’t Pull Me Over.” Lazy, labored, and poorly executed, “Don’t Pull Me Over” is actually a standout in that the song horribly redundant. “Don’t pull me over, Mr. Policeman.”
may have been successful had it been released in 1960, but at the current time is a monotonous collection of songs that appear to be behind the times. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are quick to establish a consistent and solid musical foundation with their 2010 release, but are unable to develop anything compelling enough to hold interest. Mojo
is so excruciatingly dull that it actually plays much longer than the hour runtime, with few highlights to alleviate your tedium.