|Glenn Hughes Music For The Divine||Frontiers Records|
Glenn Hughes works longer and harder on just about every solo release of the last few years, yet you can set your watch as to when they will appear on time and as regular as ever. Now that sounds like it is a dig at Glenn it sure isn't as true to Glenn's claim, each album of the last few years does sound better than the last and like a little more effort has been put in.|
It is just that being a prolific writer and also someone that knows his way around a studio, it doesn't take forever to get a new record done. Brilliant for eagerly waiting fans
Since moving away from the more straight ahead hard rock that kick-started Glenn's major comeback with such albums as From Now On and Addiction, he has slowly evolved from recording albums with set musical themes and has moved into a style zone that instead balances his influences.
The Way It Is, R.O.C.K. and Songs In The Key Of Rock saw Glenn finding his way, but it wasn't until Soul Mover that he nailed it. The perfect blend of soul, funk, R&B and rock was at last achieved.
If Soul Mover was the album where Glenn perfected his own solo style - which started off back in the funk zone of Play Me Out in the 70s - then Music For The Divine is where he moves it further forward. This is an even better sequel to Soul Mover.
This is a seriously good record, with an intense vibe and some of the best songs of Glenn's solo career to date. But it is far from an instant record. Glenn's records seldom are.
There are a few standouts early in the piece, but 6 or 7 listens in and every track has its own place and its own groove.
I think long time and true fans of Glenn Hughes will really dig this record. Anyone with a particular affection for Soul Mover will certainly find this a very worthy companion to that record.
Perhaps not all that have loved certain past Glenn Hughes records will love this. I'll always class From Now On as my all time favourite Hughes record, but I am also realistic that he is unlikely to make a record like that again. Those looking for the hard rock or AOR Glenn should not expect to hear that here. On board with Glenn here is long time guitarist JJ Marsh and back again is the Red Hot Chilli Peppers duo of percussion master Chad Smith and guitarist John Frusciante.
The Chad Smith/Glenn Hughes pairing is a masterful one, the guys compliment each other beautifully and the relationship the two formed on Soul Mover matures here.
Speaking of the music within the album The Valiant Denial gets things off to a fairly restrained start. Rather it is the utterly brilliant Steppin On, with its snappy groove and in your face attitude really getting things rolling.
What I love about the structure of this album is the tempo changes within the songs. Monkey Man, Black Light and the brilliant This Is How I Feel all do double-takes within, with chorus melodies well outside where the verse lead you to believe you were heading.
Things turn psychedelic 70s on This House and reverts a further decade back from that on parts within Frail.
The album grooves its way through several other tracks, all with their own merits.
The only blip on the radar with this release is the cover of Nights In White Satin. On it's own it's another great cover by Glenn, but I'm not sure it fits within the scheme of this album. It is the only track recorded outside these sessions and sounds like it.
Closing the album is the quite superb orchestral flavored The Divine, which sees Glenn at his most seductive vocal best.
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