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On disc: Glenn Hughes

- The Way It Is - Claudia Ehrhardt - 6 stars

The Way It Is

The Way It Is
(Steamhammer - 1999)

Since the early 70's Mr. Hughes is part of the rock and metal scene, he started with Trapeze and Deep Purple. In the mid-70's he left Deep Purple and started his solo career. His first solo album was Play Me Out and had rock music combined with influences of funk, jazz, soul and pop. Now in 1999 he released his 6th solo album, but was involved in several bands and projects over the years.
Opening with the title track Mr. Hughes presents a hard rock tune which reflects very well the mood of the album. Perhaps you need to listen to this one a few more times, it needs time to develop it's beauty. Maybe it has not the depth of previous release as the master himself mentioned, but still better than many other releases of this genre! And he returns to the hard rock and leaves his days of rock behind. The Way It Is has partly a bluesy touch, but is a rocking tune with power and melody. Even if not a catchy one... After all those years in the business he still sounds fresh, adding new sounds and elements. Listen to You Kill Me which is a good example for nowadays sound. The voice full of emotion and partly aggression, very intense and that is what makes him big, the large vocal range. On some songs (e.g. Rain On Me) he adds a soul / R&B touch to the vocals and reminds me a little of Terence Trend D'Arby....
Beside up-tempo rockers there are more mid-tempo tunes (e.g. Ever After) and great ballads like Too Far Gone (really powerful) and The Curse. The track Freedom sounds like it's taken from some late 70's / early 80's hard rock album, but not old-fashioned. At the end of the CD they placed a remix of Freedom where the voice is distorted and has a really modern sound. Personally I don't like the remix...
If you are open-minded, check it out!

6 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


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