g l e n n h u g h e s . c o m - Fan Forum

Go Back   Glenn Hughes Fan Forum > MUSIC > Album Reviews

Album Reviews Share your review or opinion on Glenn's past & current releases.


Post New Thread Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Jan-12-2005, 2:14 AM
RossClement RossClement is offline

Member Since: Jan 2005
From: Middlesex
Posts: 16
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Icon47 The Work Tapes

Hi. I've been poking around in this forum looking for album reviews. I haven't found any mention of _The Work Tapes_ with Geoff Downes. Given that this album is very different from most of the Glenn music I've sampled (so far only what's available online).

Thanks in anticipation,

Reply With Quote
Old Jan-12-2005, 7:44 AM
toadsterama's Avatar
toadsterama toadsterama is offline

Member Since: Jan 2001
From: Boise, ID
Posts: 1,199
Thanks: 19
Thanked 66 Times in 46 Posts
That's probably because The Work Tapes is what the title implies - a work in progress, at the time it was recorded. Basically it's a series of demos for an aborted album by Glenn with Geoffrey Downes of Asia. There are some good song ideas on it, but it sounds exactly like what it is - demos. I wouldn't recommend picking it up until you've gotten a better taste of Glenn's other solo output.

Reply With Quote
Old Jan-12-2005, 9:04 AM
David's Avatar
David David is offline

Member Since: Dec 2000
From: San Francisco, CA.
Posts: 8,099
Thanks: 1,030
Thanked 6,035 Times in 2,791 Posts
Icon47 Review...

First off, welcome aboard Ross. Be sure and use the 'Search' option, not just here on the Forum, but elsewhere throughout the site - you'll discover all sorts of good stuff, that otherwise might not be easily uncovered

Now, here's a review from issue No. 35 of CTC that should be of interest...

by Bill Jones - September 1998

It's been a long time between drinks for Glenn Hughes fans since the release
of his last album in 1996 and now, but something refreshing to quench that
thirst has just been released. This is the much discussed, often
bootlegged, and totally unique collection of demos that were written and
recorded by Glenn Hughes and Geoff Downes over the span of a week in June
1991. The official release finally comes seven years later, and though
still not finished as a proper album, I doubt there will be any fans upset
over its still quite raw state.

The album is titled THE WORK TAPES and is on England's Blueprint label. The
booklet is a simple four-page affair, with a picture of a studio master tape
label on the cover, and two pages of well-researched liner notes inside.
The notes detail the history of the demos, and include quotes from both
Glenn and Geoff. According to the notes, the pair wrote and recorded a song
a day and worked for a week, yet there are ten songs on the album so there
must have been a couple of days where they did more than one song. The
tracks also appear in the order they were recorded, so it's interesting to
note the creative progression in the sessions. In any case, there is almost
45 minutes worth of music on the disc consisting solely of Geoff's
synclavier and Glenn's vocals.

Geoff Downes describes the music as mainstream in the Michael Bolton vein,
"but with more of a Stevie Wonder/Marvin Gaye-style soul influence."
Musically, it's true that the songs are more pop than rock so in that sense
there is a Bolton connection, but the singing is a long way from Bolton's
vanilla style. Glenn seems to be treating this material as experimental,
because there is not the usual restrained feeling of a studio recording, and
he's exploring the upper reaches of his falsetto more so than in any other
of his recordings to date.

The disc opens with "Bed Of Roses," an amazing song where Glenn astounds
with a simply unbelievable vocal performance. Downes says "When Glenn's on
form is makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end!" and he may
well have been thinking of this particular song when he made the quote.
Besides the vocals, the song stands on its own as a totally absorbing and
immediately catchy tune. "Don't Walk Away" is an unspectacular ballad that
somewhat slows the momentum created by the opener, but still adequately
showcases some more outstanding vocals. "Love For Sale" revives the energy
with a faster tempo and a more accessible melody line. It's not the
standout the "Bed Of Roses" is, but quite possibly has more potential for
being the 'hit single' of the album with its radio-friendly pop style. The
next track is "Push" (a different song than the one from the FEEL album),
and this sustains the adult contemporary pattern of style. That is followed
by "Funk Music," easily the most aggressive track on the disc. It's a Rick
James-style funk-fest, where Glenn growls, grooves, raps, ad-libs, and
generally has fun with his Motown-influenced alter ego. Track 6 "Double
Life" returns to the r&b pop feel of earlier on the disc. "How Was I To
Know?" is the second ballad of the session, and is a little more interesting
than its predecessor, though you get the idea that these were included just
to provide a change of pace. "Walking on a Thin Line" is a Prince-like (or
is it The Artist-like?) pop-funk piece that works more on the merits of the
song itself than Glenn's vocals, which are just ordinary (for him). "Dance
With Me" isn't bad either, but combined with the previous track, it seems as
though Glenn is losing interest in the project as the energy and creativity
of the opening songs is waning as the disc goes on. Still, the song is
worth a listen for the way he whispers most of the song and later emits a
couple of really cool throaty growls, not to mention maybe the first
full-throated scream of the album in the song's closing seconds. There is
no magic to feel in the closer "Feel the Magic," an uninspired and
unfinished ballad that continues the trend of the later songs on the disc.

Being raw demos that were recorded mostly live on 8-track tape, the disc has
an obvious unfinished sound to it. It's just a few tracks of Geoff's
synclavier, drum programming and a couple of vocal tracks; no guitar, bass,
or strings, and only a few overdubbed vocals here and there. There are some
audible problems as well, with a couple of minor dropouts in the vocal
tracks and a flat-sounding drum program. But the sparse nature of the
recordings does provide the benefit of exposing Glenn's vocals in a most
advantageous light. "Bed Of Roses" may well be the song I'd play to someone
who wanted to know what Glenn Hughes is all about. Previously I may have
chosen either the unplugged version of "Coast To Coast" or Glenn's guest
appearance of "Video Killed the Radio Star" on Geoff's VOX HUMANA album, but
Glenn's performance on this new album might evoke even more of a sense of
awe than the others.

Glenn has wowed us all since he burst on the scene as an incredible talent
in Trapeze and he solidified his position as a rock superstar in Deep
Purple. But as his subsequent work shows, he has been maturing as a
vocalist with nearly every album release since those early days. And dare I
say this, but sooner or later, if it hasn't happened already, there will
come a time when Glenn can no longer hit all the notes he once hit due to
the physical effects of aging. When these recordings were done almost eight
years ago, Glenn obviously didn't have any such problems, and he seemed
intent on using every weapon in his vocal arsenal. So what you have is the
fully mature vocalist in perhaps his prime, delivering an unrestrained and
unrestricted performance more typical of a live show than the usual studio
recording. This is better than a live recording, however, in that there's
no audience noise to muddy up things, there's no peculiar concert acoustics
to overcome, and with a studio recording there's always a chance to
re-record errors, miscues, and things that just plain don't work. The word
that my co-hort Damien DeSimone used to describe this session was
"legendary." Do you need any more recommendation than that?

Glenn Hughes/Geoff Downes - THE WORK TAPES Blueprint BP285CD (UK)
Reply With Quote
Old Jan-14-2005, 3:20 AM
RossClement RossClement is offline

Member Since: Jan 2005
From: Middlesex
Posts: 16
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanks for the info. I found samples of the album on artistdirect.com. I first came to this forum looking for advice on which Glenn material to listen to first. I think that The Work Tapes, of what I've heard, would have been the last thing to listen to first, and it's fortunate I found this forum before I listened to them. I was curious as to what long term fans, who've had the opportunity to listen to the whole album (not 30 sec low quality snippets) over a period of time thought.


Reply With Quote

Navigate: Glenn Hughes Fan Forum > MUSIC > Album Reviews

Share Thread

1991, 1996, 1998, album, bass, Coast to Coast, GHPG.net, glenn, Glenn Hughes, guitar, history, search, solo, Trapeze, Video

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Art work for Welcome To The Lost World galleyfan Unofficial Releases 3 Aug-09-2012 2:20 AM
Work Tapes danielb News & Updates 4 Sep-16-2005 5:07 AM
JJ's other work Momo Off Topic 4 May-16-2005 10:36 PM
Work & Play on HTP II Shirean Reports & Pictures 2 Apr-25-2003 9:22 PM
CHAT with GLENN transcript - February 9th, 2003 Webmaster Fan CHAT Schedule & Logs 0 Feb-09-2003 5:30 PM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 7:49 AM.