How is it that Whitesnake haven’t already been inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Their early stuff is both hard and classic rock at its best, especially during the period when guitarists Micky Moody, Bernie Marsden and Mel Galley were still firing on all cylinders. Anyway, some forty years have passed by and Whitesnake is amazingly still around. Moreover, I can’t believe frontman David Coverdale is still the face of Whitesnake! But you know what they’re not the same band I once liked back in the early to mid 80s with their bluesy soulful charm. Whether its a symptom of a revolving door of musicians or tweaks in their more polished studio sound, I’ll leave it to the experts to sort that one out. But despite my gloomy attitude Whitesnake are back with Flesh and Blood their first album of new material since their last album some eight years ago. (I’m not counting The Purple Album of re-recordings from 2015.) Hardcore fans will undoubtedly love this album. In short, it’s more of the same that we have come to expect from Whitesnake over the last few decades with a little retro vibe thrown in for good measure.
HÆLOS second album Any Random Kindness has been judged harshly in some quarters. But kudos to the electronic London-based quartet for getting out of their comfort zone and producing an album that takes risks sonically even though it may end up alienating those who loved their trip hop-heavy 2016 debut Full Circle. On first listen I really like Kyoto, Empty Skies and Last One Out (Turn The Lights Off).
I have quietly admired the exploits of Chicago-based R&B singer, songwriter, poet, educator and community activist, Jamila Woods for some time now. She is truly an extraordinary and thoughtful young woman. Today she has released a concept album celebrating the black icons of literature, art and music, who have inspired and made a lasting impression on her. The album is appropriately titled, Legacy! Legacy! which celebrates names such musician Sun Ra, author Zora Neale Hurston, novelist Octavia Butler and actress Eartha Kitt and many more.
A year on since the release of Idle Hands Don’t Waste Your Time EP, the Portland, Oregon based quartet are back with their debut full-length album Mana. Metal riffs and gothic-tinged hard rock pretty much sum up what Idle Hands is about. I must admit I listened to Idle Hands debut earlier on today and maybe first thing this morning wasn’t ideal given the gloomy, melodic and often relentless attack of guitars and occult inspired lyrics. I will definitely give it another go later on during the week.
Siobhan Wilson is one of those incredible rising talents that I discovered a while ago by chance. From the outset I was immediately taken aback by her adaptability across an array of instrumentation – vocals, acoustic and electric guitar, cello and piano. Her last album There Are No Saints earned her an nomination for the coveted Scottish Album of The Year award last year and although she missed out on the coveted price, it inspired her to get back in the studio to record and release The Departure under her own record label. In short, I love the way she goes about creating music and The Departure is a brilliant follow-up to There Are No Saints. Ideas of ‘identity and independence’ are strewed throughout the album with plenty of her signature fuzzed out guitar, folky elements and much more, all set against her hauntingly beautiful vocals. This is definitely, my pick for album of the week.