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| 26 June 2019 | Reply

Label: Frontiers Music s.r.l.

Release Date: May 10, 2019

Rating: 98%

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

Whitesnake, if nothing else, is consistent.  They crank out rockers and bluesy rock stuff album after album and never failed to please, regardless of the personnel changes over the years.  The latest lineup of the band released one of the better releases from the band in years recently with Flesh & Blood.  Disc opener “Good To See You Again” delivers the rock pieces the band has been known for… screaming guitars, heavy and steady bottom end from the rhythm section, and contagious lyrics delivered with precision by David Coverdale.  This track kicks the disc off appropriately and gets the rock quotient raised quickly.  Next, “Gonna Be Alright” slows the tempo a bit, but sees Coverdale crooning in grand fashion atop some great guitar licks from the killer tandem of Joel Hoekstra and Reb Beach.  “Hey You (You Make Me Rock)” cranks along with the vocals we have come to know and love, guitar work we have come to expect, but shines thanks to the constant rhythm and foundation provided by the rhythm section of bassist Michael Devin, the incomparable drums of Tommy Aldridge, and keyboards from Michele Luppi.  This song delivers a slightly different groove of the first three tracks on the disc but fits the mold of the disc perfectly.  “When I Think Of You (Color Me Blue)” is the first glorified power ballad on the disc and was written by Coverdale alone.  The vibe of the track falls in line with the disc without being a rocker.  The Coverdale composed title track “Flesh & Blood” is the singer showing what he does best… delivering a rock vocal with blues and soul, all the while keeping the vibe cranked and the energy high.  This songs finds David delivering the goods with all the finesse and power he ever has on studio material.  Without being a balls out rocker, this is one of the discs standout tracks.  “Heart Of Stone” is another power ballad penned by David and features some great guitar work underneath his smoldering vocals and heavy lyrics.  The song makes me want to rock out, thanks to a great cadence and groove without getting overpowering or heavy sonically.  The vocals on this track hold up against any other ballad from the bands extensive catalog.  Disc closer “Sands Of Time” brings us full circle to the opening of the disc and helps continue the tie between Whitesnake songs from the classic lineups through to the latest group of rockers.  This one have a different vibe in the lyrics and a throwback guitar sound.  An energetic guitar solo is featured as the song fades out.

“Shut Up & Kiss Me” screams 1987 with an updated rock sound that embraces the skills and sounds of the cream of the crop players that grace this disc, the first studio effort for this incarnation of the band.  The chorus is catchy and the guitar work on the bridge and transitions are a guitar player’s proverbial wet dream.  Be sure to catch the cool video for this one, as the band pays homage to their past.  “Always & Forever” is another solid track penned solely by frontman Coverdale.  The tempo is slower, the mood a bit mellower, and the track leans more toward the 80’s side of the bands catalog, with guitars ripping through the bridge and a sing-song type chorus.  “Trouble Is Your Middle Name” is an interesting track for the band, as it marries the classic Whitesnake sound with something more modern.  The heavier bottom end merged with guitars and vocals take this song in a different direction.  The guitar solo at the bridge gives us a different sound to embrace from the band, and that’s saying a lot based on the list of guitarists that have graced the twelve previous Whitesnake releases.  This one gets my foot tapping and keeps me moving from opening note to the closing riff (and accompanying police sirens).  “Well I Never” has a killer riff and vocal that opens the track along with some great drumming from Aldridge.  The mood and feel of this track helps tie together the rest of the album and gives us another great track that should quickly become a live staple, if given the opportunity.  I envision horns and fists in the air moving together in the crowd. This song has the most classic flavor of any track on the collection.  “Get Up” is a breakneck rocker that unfolds slowly at first, but quickly shifts gears and allows Aldridge and Devin to run wild in the mix underneath the guitar work of Beach and Hoekstra and the keyboards of Luppi.  Coverdale’s vocals take this to the next level and help spin this into another Whitesnake classic that should please fans old and new.  “After All” is an acoustic jam that shows off Coverdale’s softer side vocally and allows the guitar strings to cool down from the heavy soloing and fret work on the other tracks.

Tracklisting: Good To See You Again – Gonna Be Alright – Shut Up & Kiss Me – Hey You (You Make Me Rock) – Always & Forever – When I Think Of You (Color Me Blue) – Trouble Is Your Middle Name – Flesh & Blood – Well I Never – Heart Of Stone – Get Up – After All – Sands Of Time






Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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