Heart is back with its 16th studio set, Beautiful Broken, which sees sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson revisiting select hidden gems from their back catalogue along with new material. Beautiful Broken was produced by Nancy Wilson and Heart bassist Dan Rothchild. The set’s title track originally served as a bonus cut to 2012’s Fanatic collection, but now features Metallica’s James Hetfield on joint vocals, along with contributing new lyrics. Other highlights include revamps of two 1980 Bebe le Strange tunes — “Sweet Darlin'” and “Down On Me.” Honorable mention goes to the contribution of legendary orchestrator Paul Buckmaster, best known for his classic early-’70s Elton John string arrangements.
Beautiful Broken was actually nearly completely recorded during soundchecks over the course of the Heart’s 2015 tour dates. While the band was still laying down tracks for the set, Ann Wilson explained to us that she and sister Nancy managed to break some new musical ground on the album: “It’s sounding very multi-dimensional; just real different from stuff we’ve done before. Some of it’s intensely soulful. One of the songs has a crazy (musical) departure that it goes off on. One of them is really spiritual — not in a Christian sense, just in a human spiritual sense. We’re not in a box on this new record, for sure. But, if after nearly 40 years, if you’re still in the box — you better think about how to get out of it (laughs)!”