CD Review: In Your Dreams, by Stevie Nicks

On Tuesday, May 3, 2011, iconic songstress Stevie Nicks released her latest CD, In Your Dreams. Having been a Stevie fanatic ever since I first heard the Rumours album at the age of seven, and given the fact that I automatically purchase any record with her name on it, I quite naturally pre-ordered the new album from Amazon, so that I would receive it on release day. When it arrived in the mail, I made a beeline for my stereo, knowing that I was in for a treat.

In Your Dreams, which is Stevie’s first new solo release since 2001’s Trouble In Shangri-La, is a very eclectic collection of tunes. It really can’t be compared to anything that she has done in the past. It does contain all of the familiar elements that we know and love about her music, but there is also a great deal of experimentation this time around. Production duties for this outing were overseen by Dave Stewart of The Eurythmics, and it seems that his influence helped to push Stevie in new directions. This album may sound strange to some fans at first, but you really have to give Stevie kudos for having the courage to try new things and stretch herself as an artist.

While there is still plenty of the old style Stevie here to satisfy long-time fans, I have to say that some of the differing styles took a while to grow on me. I usually fall madly in love with any new Stevie on the first listen, but that was not the case here. This time, it took a few spins for me to “get it.” I tended to gravitate to the particular cuts that sounded more like the Stevie I knew, such as: Secret Love, Moonlight (A Vampire’s Dream), and Annabel Lee. Now that I have listened to the album more, and had time to adjust to the newer sounds on some songs, I have really come to love them though. Songs like For What It’s Worth, Wide Sargasso Sea, New Orleans, and several others show a new side of Stevie that is truly worth exploring. The most noteworthy change in the music this time around is that there is a much more prominent use of synthesizers, which have added a whole new realm of sonic possibilities to Stevie’s songs.

The only small complaint that I do have is with the way that the album is mixed. Sometimes, the levels of the instruments make it a little difficult to really hear Stevie’s vocals, but that is really not bad enough to ruin the record. Otherwise, it is really enjoyable!

As I said earlier, this album may sound a bit disappointing to some on the first listen simply because it is different, but don’t be too quick to write it off. Given a little time, you are sure to warm up to it. Overall it is a wonderful album that makes a very worthy addition to Stevie’s impressive body of work. I would rate it four out of five stars!