Released: 2004, Frontiers Records / Atenzia Records
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
I’m not a big fan of Glenn Hughes I have to say, but I have to admit that this man still has an enormous voice that hasn’t gone sour through the years as many other older hard rock singers voices have done. The only slightly negative thing with his voice is that he has a tendency to be a bit too scream-ish sometimes like he sounded during the 70’s when he was in Deep Purple. I think he should stick within the limits of what his voice can handle.
I don’t think that this man needs any introduction at all because he has been in the business for so long and been in so many bands that you ought to know who he is and what he has done. Some of the bands he has been part of are Trapeze, Hughes/Thrall, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath and now currently the Hughes/Turner Project. He has also done numerous guest appearances and a solo career. He is truly a genuine rock legend no matter what you think of him and his work.
SOULFULLY LIVE IN THE CITY OF ANGELS is a double live CD that sums up what Hughes has achieved so far. He doesn’t disappoint with this album and he plays songs that stretch throughout his career. He plays his own songs like “Written All Over Your Face”, “Higher Places”, “Can’t Stop The Flood” but he also does songs from Trapeze (“Seafull” and “Medusa”), from Hughes/Thrall (“First Step Of Love”) and, of course, Deep Purple (“Mistreated” and “Gettin’ Tighter”).
Along with Hughes we have some really famous musicians like Chad Smith (Red Hot Chilipeppers), Kevin Dubrow (Quiet Riot) and Alex Ligertwood (Santana). All of the musicians involved are really competent musicians.
Glenn doesn’t talk so much between the songs, he mostly says thanks and sometimes he introduces the next song and introduces the musicians when they do solo numbers. The album was recorded in Sound Image studio in North Hollywood during January 2004 in front of a very small audience consisting of friends and selected regulars from Hughes’ website. Hughes describes the recording session as people sitting “cross–legged on the floor surrounded by candles ... intimately a bit like the unplugged shows they used to do on MTV”.
The bio I was sent describes Hughes’ music as strictly hard rock and nothing more. My personal opinion is that the music sounds more like 70’s hard rock sometimes influenced by funk and blues. Hughes says that his music is everything from soul, rock, blues and funk.
There is also a single DVD of this same live gig. The only difference is that the songs are in different order here and that this CD has two bonus tracks that are taken from the studio taping. The songs are called “Change” and “The Healer”. “The Healer” is a pure ballad and is almost strictly acoustic where Hughes proves what depth and strength he still has in his voice. “Change” includes the whole band is also a ballad.
Hughes have produced this live CD along with the well-known producer in melodic rock circles, Fabrizio Grossi. Just like on the DVD the production is brilliant. You can hear everyone loud and clear and very distinctly. For some reason they have put in a pause between every song and they fade out the audience too, that makes the whole live feeling drop I think.
I think that the CD works a lot better than the DVD. Of course there are some minor negative things but as a whole this album feels pretty good. If you are a fan of this man this album is a given purchase.
Favorite tracks are “Mistreated”, “Gettin’ Tighter” and “Written All Over Your Face”.