I love Janes Addiction, but I never got in to Porno For Pyros, and Perry Farrell’s solo offerings never really did it for me either. Kind Heaven though, is a very upbeat and happy sounding record, that I find mostly – emphasis on mostly – hard to dislike – not that I’m trying to hate it.
(Red, White and Blue) Cheerfulness opens the album, and it is definitely cheerful. As I stated earlier, it’s extremely upbeat and happy sounding music – something that I honestly wasn’t expecting, but I like it so far.
Pirate Punk Politician has a bit of a harder edge to it. It’s a little dirtier and grittier, particularly in its lyrical content. It’s an infusion of contrasting styles, yet not convoluted at all. Snakes Have Many Hips is a bouncy piano driven affair that is a lot of fun. There’s a “big band” feeling here that is interesting and unexpected.
Machine Girl is smooth pop rock, and I can’t help but think of Prince at times. The lyrics can be quite ridiculous though, as Farrell try’s to invoke a sensual feeling. One is his version of a dance floor anthem, that falls short for me, while Where Have You Been All My Life continues the dancey vibes, while bringing in an industrial flair.
More Than I Could Bear is a soft and tender song, the closest to a ballad on offer. There are some really nice string sections involved here, and the vocal harmonies are superb. It’s theatrical and bold – making for a surprising highlight.
Spend The Body is pop music by numbers, and the track that I like least. It’s not out of place really, it’s just not for me.
Album closer Let’s All Pray For This World is the most ambitious track of the album. This is probably the best that Farrell sounds, but it does become more than just a little repetitive.
Produced by the legendary Tony Visconti (David Bowie) and featuring a star studded assortment of musicians including Taylor Hawkins, Tommy Lee and Elliot Easton, Kind Heaven has the pedigree to be amazing, it just seems to try too hard to be just that, and winds up being only good, instead of reaching its true potential.
Review by Shayne McGowan