What a career this man has had! He first came to prominence as the bassist and singer with funk rock band Trapeze in 1969, and whilst with them he recorded three fine albums. Then in 1973 the young Glenn Hughes was lured away by the bright lights, fame and fortune of Deep Purple who were attracted by his bass playing and voice, giving Deep Purple a dual vocals attack of both Hughes and David Coverdale, replacing both Ian Gillan and Roger Glover to give us the line-up commonly known as ‘Deep Purple Mark 3’.
The band retired to the studio and recorded the seminal album “Burn” (1974) and in April of that year Deep Purple were one of the headliners of the California Jam, along with Emerson Lake and Palmer and Black Sabbath. This was David Coverdale’s first ever professional band and just the third appearance for this line-up in front of a paying audience. The attendance at the concert is estimated at between 300,000- 400,000, a pretty daunting prospect and everybody dealt with it in their own way. Many suspect this was the beginning of Glenn Hughes downward spiral into the depths of rock’n’roll’s darker side of excess. Certainly Hughes’ introduction to the song “Mistreated” is interrupted by a huge sniff in the middle, rather giving the game away.
Deep Purple struggled on for two more albums after this before imploding in acrimony and going from one of the biggest bands in the world to a virtual laughing stock.
Leaving the debris of Deep Purple behind, Glenn Hughes played with a multitude of musicians, Black Sabbath, David Bowie, and an excellent album with Pat Thrall which was thwarted by both musicians not being in a fit state to get to the stage and promote the album. On paper it was a match made in Heaven, but in actual fact Hell was a more suitable abode for this partnership. Solo albums were released by Hughes and disappeared without trace, no album featuring any cohesion or direction.
By the end of the Eighties even Hughes himself realized he was in trouble and more rehab was required and a serious attempt to clean his act up was made. Fortunately by 1991 he was drug and alcohol free and able to continue his career.
After some solid work in the Nineties and Noughties he formed the super group Black Country Communion in 2009 with Joe Bonamassa, Derek Sherinian, and Jason Bonham. The band released three successful albums and toured the world to great acclaim; Hughes, now clean and sober, was back.
The one thing Hughes had never done up to this point was release a truly great album under his own name. Well now he has, “Resonate” is that album and every track is a real winner that drives out of the grooves like a runaway train. The first three tracks send out the notification that this is a solid Rock album. The other remaining tracks, also all of the highest quality, show a lot more versatility.
Glenn is in powerful vocal form and his bass playing is the best it’s ever been. But although this is a solo album, the work of his band must not be overlooked. Soren Andersen leaves his guitar skills all over the album with some really dirty rock’n’roll; Ponius Enborg is a considerably skillful drummer, whilst the real find is Lachy Doley who holds the whole thing together like Hughes’ old partner, the late great Jon Lord, used to do in Deep Purple. His solo in the song “God Of Money” has to be a tribute to the great keyboard player.
No review of this album would be complete without a mention of the beautiful ballad “Nothing’s the Same”, with Hughes singing over a simple acoustic guitar backing. After the bombast of the previous eleven tracks, it’s a lovely way to end the album.
With a new Black Country Communion album just released this year, Glenn Hughes is, at the grand age of 65, in a fine purple patch of his career. “Resonate” gets a solid 5 stars.
Musicians on “Resonate”:
Glenn Hughes – bass and vocals
Soren Andersen – guitars
Ponius Enborg – drums
Lachy Doley – keyboards
Let It Shine
God of Money
When I Fall
Stumble and Go
Long Time Gone
Nothing’s the Same
Note: Written by Mott The Dog and Hells Bells. Mott can often be found in his kennel at Jameson’s on Soi A.R, North Pattaya.