Personnel: Robert Plant (vocals); Phil Johnstone (vocals, keyboards); Doug Boyle (guitar); Charlie Jones (bass); Chris Blackwell (drums).
Personnel: Robert Plant (vocals); Robert Plant; Phil Johnstone (guitar, guitars, keyboards); Doug Boyle (guitars); Charlie Jones (bass instrument); Siddi Makain Mushkin, Jerry Wayne (background vocals); Laila Cohen, Rob Stride, Micky Groome, Carolyn Harding (vocals); Chris Blackwell (guitar, drums).
Audio Mixer: Bill Price .
Audio Remasterers: Raj Das; Daniel Hersch; Bill Inglot.
Liner Note Author: Ed Vulliamy.
Anyone who couldn't see that Robert Plant was returning back to his bombastic Zeppelin roots on his 1988 release, NOW & ZEN, definitely got the hint on his fifth solo release two years later, MANIC NIRVANA. Sonically, the album was Plant's most rock-based solo release yet, with weighty guitar riffs serving as the basis for many of the songs.
While there's no mistaking MANIC NIRVANA for a Zep album (the production is a lot cleaner here than on their past classics), it was a welcome return back to the type of music that made a name for Plant in the first place. Tracks such as "Hurting Kind (I've Got My Eyes on You)," "Nirvana," and "Tie Dye on the Highway" are pure hard rockers. Other highlights include "Anniversary" (which harkens back to Plant's earlier solo work), and the Middle Eastern-tinged "Watching You."
Rolling Stone (5/17/90) - 4 Stars - Excellent "...this new sound is even more exciting than the old...may well be the singer's most important work to date."
Entertainment Weekly - B+ "gritty, fascinating"
Q - 4 Stars - Excellent - Ranked by Q as the #8 Album of 1990.