Frontiers Records [Release date 16.10.15]
Something of a blast from the past, the last of two Voodoo Hill albums was way back in 2004. While the brainchild of Italian guitarist Dario Mollo, for most fans however the interest will be in Glenn Hughes laying his distinctive vocal pipes to the release, as he did with the first two.
It used to be commonplace for him to appear on others projects, but recently he has more selectively focused on his own projects like Black Country Communion and California Breed, plus of course his upcoming collaboration with Doug Aldrich, so this is a feather in Mollo’s cap.
Opener ‘All That Remains’ is a tasteful melodic track with the ‘voice of rock’ relatively subdued. However it is untypical of the rest of the album, ‘The Well’ setting the tone of muscular bluesy workouts not unlike Glenn’s last projects, and with barely a trace of funk in sight. Dario delivers a great solo on ‘Rattle Shake Bone’, while ‘Underneath And Down Below’ is atmospheric with an eastern feeling and Blackmore-esque guitar work.
The title track is a beautiful slow track which, as it builds to a climax, sees some vintage screams by Glenn, putting his heart and soul into the project. The whole effect reminds me of ‘No Stranger To Love’ on Black Sabbath’s ‘Seventh Star,’ still one of his finest moments.
The second half is marginally less interesting with the heavy grooves of ‘Karma Go’ starting to repeat after a time, while the closing trio of ’White Feather’ and ‘Sunflower’, with another epic guitar solo, and ‘Last Door’ have more of a dry seventies feel and take a little more persistence to get into. Nevertheless with Glenn Hughes sounding at his freshest and a set of classic old-fashioned hard rock, this release has much to commend it. ****
Review by Andy Nathan
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