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BlackHawk

Love & Gravity – 1997 (Arista)

Reviewed by Brian Wahlert

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CDs by BlackHawk

¦We want to help redefine this musical form,¦ says Henry Paul, lead singer of BlackHawk. In other words, don¦t expect this album to be like the group¦s first two. Sure, some songs, like the title track, ¦Stepping Stones,¦ and ¦Hold Me Harmless,¦ would fit right in on the group¦s last album.

However, the trio points to pop artist Desmond Child as an important influence, so not surprisingly, this album has much stronger pop leanings than the group¦s previous work. The bluesy midtempo first single, ¦Hole in My Heart,¦ co-written by Child, is the first clue, but stronger evidence is the string-laden ballad, ¦Postmarked Birmingham.¦ The disc¦s best track is the poppish ballad ¦She Dances With Her Shadow,¦ nicely showcasing the group¦s gorgeous harmonies. ¦Will You Be There (in the Morning)¦ is a remake of an early-Nineties hit by the rock group Heart, and ¦Lonely Boy¦ features a ¦Linus and Lucy¦-like piano. Although this album is certainly an interesting departure, after this change in musical direction, the group may never again achieve the great raw country rock of its debut.