Tuesday, June 30, 2020

"Hearts Away" by Night Ranger

Song#:  3180
Date:  07/04/1987
Debut:  92
Peak:  90
Weeks:  3
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  Night Ranger had a lot of ground to make up. The first single from their fourth album Big Life, the movie theme "The Secret of My Success," stalled at a low #64 on the Pop chart (#12 Rock). It was a disappointment coming off of three Top 20 hits, including one Top 10, from their platinum-selling previous LP 7 Wishes. To try and get thing back on track, this next single was released. Unfortunately, it was virtually a non-starter. After three short weeks it dropped off the Pop chart while not even making the Rock chart. Still, the album managed to make it to #28 and go gold, but it was considered a misstep and the band's career trajectory started to head south.

ReduxReview:  Releasing a power ballad after the failure of "Secret" was a good move. After all, their two biggest hits were power ballads, so it seemed like a no-brainer to push this one out and expect a sizable hit. It didn't happen. I'm not exactly sure why. It was a pretty good tune, even if it wasn't quite as memorable as their previous hits. I would have expected at least a Top 40 showing from the tune, but it flopped even worse than "Secret." I think there was a bit of backlash against the band for going the Hollywood/David Foster route and that may have played a part. Fans were less supportive and radio decided they had had enough of the same power ballad sound from the band. The album really wasn't very good, but this track stood out from the rest and deserved a bit more attention.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  The band gave it one more go with a third single from the album. "Color of Your Smile" would be pushed out, but with "Hearts Away" stalling quickly, there was little to support the song and it failed to make any chart. After seven consecutive Top 20 entries at Rock, five Pop Top 20 hits, and two platinum albums, the band hit a big stumbling block. It seemed their brand of mainstream rock was on the outs while the beefier glam rock sounds of bands like Bon Jovi were picking up the mantle.


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