Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers / Tom Petty

Damn the Torpedoes/Southern Accents/Hard Promises

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This set combines three Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers albums, 1979's breakthrough Damn the Torpedoes, 1981's Hard Promises, and 1985's Southern Accents, in a single package, and as such it charts an interesting creative arc for Petty. There are some classic songs here, like "Here Comes My Girl," "The Waiting," and "Don't Come Around Here No More," which spotlight Petty at his absolute best as a ragged, sneering rock & roller with a weary heart of gold. Most fans will already have each of these albums, but if not, this is an easy way to get all three. Universal has done this kind of thing before with Petty, combining Damn the Torpedoes and Southern Accents with 1991's Into the Great Wide Open for a similar package issued in 1999. That set also charts an intriguing arc, but Petty & the Heartbreakers are so consistent, it's really just the same story starting and ending a little differently. This is one steady, dependable little band.

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