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Back in the High Life Import

4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Oct. 1 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Island
  • ASIN: B000001FKA
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews
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1. Higher Love
2. Take It As It Comes
3. Freedom Overspill
4. Back In The High Life Again
5. The Finer Things
6. Wake Me Up On Judgement Day
7. Split Decision
8. My Love's Leavin'

Product Description

In a career full of triumphs, this 1986 LP might have been the pinnacle for Winwood; it sold three million copies and gave him his first #1, the Grammy-winning Higher Love . It joins the infectious title tune; the hit Freedom Overspill; Split Decision , and more pop gems with guests Joe Walsh, James Taylor and others!

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Steve Winwood was indeed enjoying the high life after the release of this album in 1986. Back in the High Life is one of the best albums of that musically rich decade, providing Winwood with four huge hit singles. Winwood almost became too popular as a result of these songs; the radio played Higher Love, The Finer Things, Freedom Overspill, and Back in the High Life Again so often that even I eventually began to grow tired of them. As a result, I can say that I enjoy this album even more today than I did at the time of its initial release. Winwood's distinctive, laid-back music never goes out of style, and it soothes the soul while touching the heart with some quite emotional, really meaningful lyrics. I'm afraid I can't really describe the music; all I can say is that it combines drums, guitars, and horns in a way that is all its own.
While the album is remembered primarily for commercial successes such as Higher Love (featuring memorable backup vocals by Chaka Kahn) and Back in the High Life Again (featuring harmony vocals by James Taylor), it features eight songs of incredible quality. I might note that each track exceeds five minutes in length, so this album is not as short as it may appear. Take It As It Comes had real hit potential in my opinion. Wake Me Up on Judgment Day doesn't seem that memorable yet plays itself over and over in your mind after you hear it. Split Decision features some great guitar riffs, proving that Winwood can get down and rock a little when he wants to. The final track, My Love's Leavin', may well be the best song on the album, communicating both loss and hope in a way few artists can equal. You would be hard pressed to find a more impressive album from top to bottom than Steve Winwood's Back in the High Life.
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Format: Audio CD
As an experienced artist, Winwood reaches his peak on this masterpiece.
The songs here differ, at least after repeated listenings, from most radio pop in their wonderful sophistication. Repeated changes in mood and texture abound in almost every track, and are especially marked on the outstanding "Finer Things" and "Split Decision", where they add a surprising dimension that keeps the songs listenable all through. Generally, the mood is sober and almost dark, and it is noteworthy that the best-remembered track "Higher Love" is by far the brightest and most emotional on the record. Will Jennings' love stories are put forward in such a sober, almost proper, manner that one can believe them easily.
The changes in mood I liken to patches of colour on a black background, and they work wonderfully with the flawlessly-crafted songs, such as "Freedom Overspill", "Wake Me Up On Judgement Day" and "Take It As It Comes". The music, despite its rather darkish tone, never gets tearful. The sophistication and tunefulness mean that not one of the forty-four minutes on the record seems excessive, and Winwood's cast (including Chaka Khan and Joe Walsh) backs him up very well, with Khan's voice elevating the still-famous "Higher Love" to a new level.
One of the major albums of the 1980s, and unrivalled as music to play when one's in grief over a lost lover.
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Format: Audio CD
After a 20 year career with the Spencer Davis Group, Traffic, Blind Faith and as a solo artist, Steve Winwood finally hit big with this album of consistent quality from start to finish. Throughout, Winwood's high, soulful voice is on good form, and the songs are his most consistently commercial to date - every one being memorable. The Grammy-winning 'Higher love' opens the album, and from then on it's the same excellent standard, with potential hit after hit until the gentle closing ballad 'My love is leaving', with lyrics by former Bonzo Dog Band front-man and occasional Winwood collaborator Viv Stanshall.
The album's sound and style is very different from that of his earlier solo efforts, thanks to factors such as the large session band, the heavy use of percussion, synthesizers and horns, and the powerful overall sound of the recording contributed by the mixing style of Tom Lord-Alge. There are also notable contributions from a number of well-known artists, such as Chaka Khan, Dan Hartman, James Ingram and James Taylor (vocals), John Robinson and Steve Ferrone (drums) and Nile Rodgers and Joe Walsh (guitar). Although synthesizers and drum machines are quite prominent in the recording, they are tempered by Winwood's stylish vocals and Hammond organ playing, and the album certainly does not have a machine-like, soulless sound, but rolls along effortlessly assisted by the complex percussion arrangements. Guitars appear on most tracks, although the use of a synth bass rather than bass guitar does mean that the tracks do not 'flow' quite as naturally as they might have done.
Whilst not wanting to downplay Winwood's other albums (the subsequent 'Roll with it' is also excellent) this record is so consistent that it must be regarded as probably his best so far. Very highly recommended.
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Format: Audio CD
In the 80's when albums were changing over to CD's,"Back in the High life"was the first one I bought.I couldn't believe the sounds I was hearing from my new stero.Later one I found out it wasn't my new system,but this Masterpiece by Steve Winwood.I've never had a record like this one,with 8 powerhouse cuts.The three big hits from the record are fantastic."Higher love," with Chaka Khan on vocals,"Back in the High Life again," with JT,and my favorite number,"The Finer Things." I love this number.Its so cool how it starts out,and keeps building to one of the greatest songs ever.The Synthesizer that Steve has always been know for,is Brilliant.The other single's not played on the radio are just as great.My favorite is the second number,"Take it as it comes." This one really is a Horn Driven,Drum Blasting Piece.Most of the songs on this tape has the same drive except for the last number,"My Love's Leaving Me." Its a sad closing cut,but beutifull,with hope that maybe she will change her mind."Back in the High Life" has got to be Steve Winwoods greatest.
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