As if the 15-song bounty of Tiers weren’t enough, it’s joined by a second disc, And Other Stories, with more chapters from the couple’s life. These aren’t castoffs, either, but fully realized songs with careful arrangements and a galvanizing magic of their own. Several standouts: the lushly orchestrated “Agnostic’s Prayer,” the punningly titled “Rec Room for a Generation,” the exquisite “The Day Before Tomorrow” (with its beguiling mix of harpsichord, woodwinds, and vocal harmonies), and “When Willy Played Guitar,” a fond ode to the late Willy Kirchofer, with whom Heyman had played since they were teenagers. There’s really not a bum track in the bunch.
In fact, that leads to the only conceivable negative I have to offer about this double-disc set — and it’s not really a negative at all. Quite simply, Tiers/And Other Stories is an embarrassment of riches whose 30 songs are almost too much to process. Almost. Any true pop fan should be up for such a “challenge.” Just come prepared to get happily lost in a world of song for a long, long time.
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