Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Nina Gordon 

Tonight and the Rest of My Life (Warner Bros.)

Visions of Heart, right around the time Ann Wilson was putting on the pounds, go through one's mind while listening to former Veruca Salt co-founder Nina Gordon's debut album Tonight and the Rest of My Life. Yet these dreams aren't rock and roll ones; they're slow-chewing pop nuggets with ready-made radio hooks and plenty of introspection. If Gordon's last album with Veruca Salt, 1997's Eight Arms to Hold You, was a blurry night of group hedonism, then Tonight is a quiet evening at home -- alone, naturally, with a nice cabernet and self-help book.

Suffice to say, Tonight is more tuneful than any Veruca Salt album. Besides the monster, bandwagon-jumping "Seether," Veruca Salt hasn't contributed much to the pop landscape. "Seether" came at the right time, with just enough muscle -- and Breeders-like panache -- to score. The band's two albums with Gordon are messy, ill-conceived affairs; its attempt to make itself over as a primal hard rock outfit sans testicles on Eight Arms was just plain wrongheaded. On Tonight Gordon wants to go straight and nearly succeeds. But she's a little too fond of cheeseball pop and attached to their sticky arrangements. Strings adorn many of these (mostly midtempo) songs. Even a biting track like "Now I Can Die" ("I'm the girl and he's the guy/He opened up my eyes/I understand everything and now I can die") loses some of its irony when washed in the pretty melodies Gordon supplies. But they are pretty nonetheless. And producer Bob Rock provides enough sonic strength to prevent these tunes from sinking in pathos.

Still, "Seether" fans may balk at the sheer adultness of the sweeping title track or Gordon's choice to end with an appropriately straight-faced cover of Skeeter Davis's ripe weeper "The End of the World." But it shouldn't come as a surprise by that point. Throughout Tonight Gordon asks, "What about love?" And the memory of the Wilson sisters answers back, "Don't let it slip away." Gordon takes the task to heart.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at [email protected].

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

More by Michael Gallucci

Read the Digital Print Issue

January 5, 2022

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


Staff Pick Events

  • Clayton English @ Hilarities Comedy Club

    • Fri., Jan. 21
  • Windborne's the Music of Queen @ State Theatre

    • Fri., Jan. 21
  • Cleveland Pops: All That Jazz @ Severance Music Center

    • Sat., Jan. 22

© 2022 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation