Into the Great Wide Open strikes me as a singular album. Perhaps it’s not even the best Tom Petty album, but it stands out from the rest in some kind of way.
Maybe it’s nostalgia? It’s the first Petty album I bought.
Maybe it’s humble? None of the songs are flashy, sitting right on the fence between songwriting and rock ‘n roll.
Maybe it’s the lyrics? I’ve listened to this album a lot, so I’ve actually heard the lyrics and they’re the right balance between clever and storytelling, for me.
Maybe it’s Jeff Lynne? Love that guy’s production work. Great touch.
It’s not too long, it’s not too short. All the moving parts do their job without getting showy. Perhaps, it’s just more than the sum of its parts.