Fused - Reviews

  • "FUSED"


    Release Date: July 12th, 2005 [Worldwide]

    Label: Sanctuary Records

    Catalogue No.: SANCD372

    Where to start :eek: The new album from Tony Iommi featuring GLENN on Vocals & Bass, along with Kenny Aronoff pounding the skins, and Bob Marlette featured on keys (also Executive Producer), is everything Glenn promised it would be and then some!!

    It's HUGE and I've never felt Glenn's bass shake my bones as hard as on these 10 brand new songs! I can only imagine what it's going to be like when they bring this to us all live on stage....hopefully not too long from now!

    Dopamine (4:09), the opening track kicks things off with Glenn in full metal bass mode with Aronoff laying down the crashing beat which will follow us throughout the entire album. A wonderful rockin' chorus makes this song standout and was a good choice to begin the onslaught! Tony's solo is brief but deafening, and it sets you up nicely for what's about to follow!!

    Next up is one of my favourites, Wasted Again (3:56) - Glenn's vocals are right up my street on this song ("how does it feel" and the perfect screams in all the right places)! A heavy chorus takes us to Iommi, who kicks in with a short, but classic fretwork display, reminiscent of something that might be found on Technical Ecstasy. Perfection - can't wait to hear this one live. Maybe this should even be the opener onstage?

    Saviour Of The Real (4:08) starts with some more of those thumping bass lines from Glenn that I eluded to at the beginning of this review, with Kenny Aronoff pounding hard right along side! Tony's riffing is ever present, while Glenn takes charge with another monster vocal delivery. There's a great lyrical passage that proceeds the chorus, that only Glenn can deliver. Tony's solo starts layered over Glenn's vocal wizardary which works really well. Can it get any better I ask myself....you better read on to find out :cool:

    Resolution Song (4:56) fades right in and has a wonderfully rymthmic vocal from Glenn that leads us right into the thunderous chorus. Again Glenn shines on this song, there's even a nod and a wink to Ozzy passing through the delivery of the chorus! Tony gives us a quick shot of his trademark solo work as the song comes to a conclusion. This is another I'd like to hear live.

    Grace (5:14) - not a person but a state of mind....has the heaviest intro yet, but quickly changes pace into a lyric that Glenn carries off as only he can. The duo of Hughes/Aronoff is taken to the next level on this song, there's no words to describe it, other than thunderous - they've out done themselves on this one! Iommi quickly changes the pace with an onslaught of Metallica-style rhythm and metal guitar prowess, closing with a trademark solo, I hope we have the chance to hear live.

    Deep Inside A Shell (3:43) - a not often heard vocal for Glenn on this one, with the chorus almost Oasis in places - I like it, but might surprise some. Both acoustic and electric guitar are present here and works well. There's a nice laid back (for Iommi) guitar solo that kicks-in midway, that then carries the song to the chorus and out.

    What You're Living For (4:38) - absolutely love this one, with classic 80's NWOBHM riffs kicking it off, we're soon hearing an opening guitar break, followed by the introductory 100-mph vocal! This is similar in vein to what might be found on the last Voodoo Hill album, but it's taken to the next level by the pumping vocals, Aronoff's thumping powerhouse drum work and huge chorus. Tony really makes his mark on this with a brief, but effective, trademark classic metal guitar solo and so it's a must play in the live set. Headbangers rejoice!

    Face Your Fear (4:36), if this one doesn't make it live, knock me down with a feather :) Another sonic laden vocal from Glenn and the chorus has "hit" written all over it - this is another of my personal favourites. If radio doesn't pick this one up, I'll be very surprised. (Well, not really, you know how they are)! Lovin' this one!!

    The Spell (4:58) - whoa, now this is HEAVY! I've never heard Glenn in this light before, again it's got to be played live! Things slow for the initial lyrical passages, but soon pick up steam for yet another classic riffing vocal delivery. Some might say it's a 'kinda run-of-the mill outing, but for me, this is the sort of song that pushes all the right buttons! Great delivery from all.

    I Go Insane (9:14) - the crème de la crème - what can you say, this is IOMMI/HUGHES at their absolute best. I would like it to have carried on for an extra few minutes, as I felt Tony's guitar solo was cut short a little or at the very least, would of enjoyed more of an extended outing - but clocking in at 9+ minutes, it's one of the best songs they have ever worked on together. Oh yes, and of course, I demand it's played live!! Starts slow, builds, peaks with soaring guitar and is rounded out with another pounding vocal, then another final twist and turn takes the song to it's conclusion with subtle outro keyboards.

    So in summary, an absolute classic! But be sure to turn the volume knob to 10. Very different from the The 1996 DEP Sessions, and as much as it might sound more like Iommi than Hughes material, Glenn stamps his mark all over it - from the lyrics & vocals to the unusually HEAVY bass work. Another standout, is Kenny Aronoff on drums, I was pleasantly surprised how he kept up with the other two masters! Special mention to Bob Marlette, although the keyboards are not present that often, where they are used, they're very effective, especially on I Go Insane.

    In closing, I really hope they can find room for at least Wasted Again, Saviour Of The Real, Resolution Song, Grace, What Your're Living For, Face Your Fear, The Spell and I Go Insane in the live set, with perhaps 3 or 4 from Seventh Star and The 1996 DEP Sessions. They've said they'd like to play for 2 hours, so that should be enough time, don't you think ;) But I do think it would be mistake to play Sabbath/Purple material - people attending these shows will know Glenn & Tony's past collaborations, so I would highly recommend they focus on only the material they have worked on together. We can see them solo for anything else....right?! Anyway, thats just my 2 cents!!

    A classic album - 5 stars, 10 out of 10, numero uno - GET IT :D

  • Here's another review.....


  • Billy Joel: "I'm in a New York State of Mind."

    GH and Tony Iommi: "I'm in a Grace State of Mind."

    SOUNDS GOOD TO ME!!!!! :)


  • Hi everybody

    Just finished listening to Fused and I must say I'm a bit dissapointed after the first listening. There are some very good moments on it , oh yes, there are, but to me the songs lack good melodic and thus more catchy and recognizable riffs.

    The overall sounding quality is very good, indeed. Unfotunately the songs lack the sparkle. The 1996 DEP Sessions stays longer in your mind. However, it's still the first listening.

    My grade, as for now is: 3 of 5 points (and nor more!)

  • Thank you David and Shirean for that excellent preview. I feel like 14 again waiting for the next Purple, Zep or Sabs album to be released! Judging from the brief soundbytes it's going to be huge. I can''t see the rock press disagreeing with your 5 star reviews. If Classic Rock here in the UK give it less than 5 stars, I will publicly eat the magazine. (oh and David, please restore my edit if I need to change this bit. Knowing my luck, they will give it 4 and a half!)Tony is saving his best riffs for 30 thirty years for the man who can. I say amen to that!!!

  • I am quite impressed with Fused, I have to say. Tony brings Glenn to the "Dark Side" with his huge riffs, but Glenn keeps the songs from sounding like Black Sabbath by injecting some soulful, spirited vocals. Not a funk moment in sight, but some very good heavy melodic rock. The last song will blow your socks off :thumbup:


  • I don't think Fused is something I'm going to click with right away but it's going to be a grower....That epic long song sure seemed impressive though.


  • After 5 more listenings to FUSED I don't change my mind. The only highlight for me seems to be "I Go Insane", the last track on the album, a nice attempt to create a contemporary epic anthem. There's a lot going on in this 9-minute song. It starts with a beautiful guitar solo from Tony. It's a pity he loosed the grip later on.

    What else... hm. This is probably the heaviest album Glenn has ever been involved in, so I guess it's going to be sth new for many of the fans. Still, I hope it won't push him away entirely from the more soulful/funk stuff he used to do.

  • After listening to the clips, it seems Glenn is singing more with an English accent than he does on his solo albums.

    Anyone else noticed any differences or is it just the crappy mp3 quality (56bit) ?

  • I have listened to Fused a few times now and I have to agree with John H. It does not grab me and scream awesome from the first few listens. Dont get me wrong, I am enjoying it but I fear I may not listen to it long or refer back to it except for a song or too. I compare this to somewhere in between 7th Star and Dep Sessions.

    Again, Glenn and Tony perform great but I'm not quite sure how this will stand up over the course of time in the body of work that Glenn has. Somewhere in the bottom half in my opinion.

    I will listen to it. I will enjoy it. I will most likely forget it.:confused:


  • I've listened now several times and every time it's getting better. I think that you have to be a Black Sabbath fan and in the second place a Glenn Hughes fan; that's the right combination, if you are a Glenn Hughes fan only it's too dark and too slow.

    But I who am a huge Black Sabbath fan (since i am ten years old) and knew Glenn then only from the Purple days (till the seventh star off course) can only say that's it's great. It's a Iommi album with the greatest singer of all times :bow:

    I will buy it at once on 12 july.

  • Here's another one - can't wait, mine's now ordered, just counting the days :D Just a pity the reviewer didn't pay more attention to the song titles :eek:

    "Tony Iommi and Glenn Hughes have quite a storied history together. Both hailing from the same area in England, Iommi and Hughes first collaborated together on the 1986 Black Sabbath album, Seventh Star, before reuniting in 1996 to work on some new tunes Iommi had penned. The project was ultimately shelved when Iommi reunited with his Sabbath pals, but it finally saw an official release in 2004, as The 1996 DEP Sessions. During the album's resurgence, the duo decided to work on a proper album together, which resulted in Fused a year later. Joined by session ace drummer Kenny Aronoff, Iommi and Hughes made a conscious decision to come up with a heavier, more riff-based album than DEP (which Iommi felt was more melodically-based). Well, the trio definitely accomplished their desired goal, as evidenced by such riff mongers as Dopamine, Wasted Again, and Face Your Fear. But surprisingly, the best tracks are the ones where a bit of melody slips in, especially Grace and Deep Inside His Shell. And like Sabbath's classic early albums, Fused ends on a truly epic note, with the near ten minute long Insane. Soulful vocals, heavy riffs, and mighty drumming — is Fused a sign that a new powerhouse trio had been born?"

    4 out of 5 Stars


  • Quote

    I think that you have to be a Black Sabbath fan and in the second place a Glenn Hughes fan; that's the right combination, if you are a Glenn Hughes fan only it's too dark and too slow.

    I think CD's got the point. I guess that's why I'm not that enthusiastic about Fused. There are some good moments there but Glenn doesn't belong to that dark and gruesome climate. I like him better in more light-hearted stuff.

  • you guys i love every song i have heard on this cd in my opinion mr hughes is once again displaying his musical genius with his ability to adapt to any situation -while i can understand the arguement that you have to like iommi"s playing ( which i think is a very separate style all his own) i feel that glenn takes this guitar style and brings it to a higher level and makes it his own i feel that this is a glenn hughes album with tony iommi playing the guitar and not the other way around - but not to knock iommi when i say this who i feel kicks ass in his own right

  • Well, this is a knee-jerk review, but having listened to Fused a couple of times now - courtesy of Best Buy's website ;) - I have to say that, beyond "Dopamine", I'm pretty unimpressed. True, these are only low-fi .WMA files, but I don't think that sound quality is the issue here.

    What I'm talking about is song quality, (a personal perception, I admit), and I pretty much don't like these songs. Period.

    No, the songs aren't dreadful, but for me they're nothing special either. More Iommi then they are Hughes, these songs are mostly dark, brooding numbers with a very modern-sounding edge in spots that drone and plod along without much spark or vitality for the most part. Though the execution is brilliant, (indeed Tony, Glenn and Kenny put in performances that few others in this day and age could match), in the end I think that these songs fail to inspire me for pretty much the same reasons Grunge didn't either; they lack joy or vibrance.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled to death that Glenn is getting the opportunity to crack the U.S. market with a project of this stature, and I'll support his efforts here in the States with the purchase of this record, but this stuff just isn't for me, and in a year where we have seen Glenn finally find the perfect and commercially potent balance of rock, funk and soul in his own music via the exuberant Soul Mover, Fused simply falls flat for me in comparison.

    And perhaps that's the truest key to my take on this album; it could be that the greatest failing of Fused is that it simply isn't as good as Soul Mover.

    In any case, that Fused has begotten Glenn a solo deal with Sanctuary is just awesome, but I think that that solo deal is the real prize here. For my part, I hope that the next album of his own that Glenn brings to the table as a result of this wonderful and well-deserved boost in profile capitalizes more on Glenn's own sound and style then it does on this record's.

    Bottom Line: I'll buy it, but I'll be quite surprised if I listen to it more than a few times before it gets shelved.

  • I don't look at these as two side-by-side Glenn records, as they're two completely different beasts - so I agree about Soul Mover - it's much more my cup of tea too vs. Fused.....but I think you should wait to get the disc in your hand and turned up as loud as you can to fully appreciate it. It's a grower, so 2, maybe 3 listens in and you'll "get it" a lot more....trust me :)

  • Marc,

    I remember when I heard those inital clips a couple of months ago, it seems the long song and Dopamine were the highlights and the rest was kind of Velvet Revolver/Audioslave ish modern and disappointing. But I will wait till I get it and play it ten times to make a final judgement, and I'm not listening to anymore previews full or otherwise. I'm like James Gaden also, I do like Soul Mover but it never made me fall in love like Sitkor, (even though SM is totally great...it's just me) which currently holds the record for the the most times I've ever played a CD without burning out. It think it was in my car ever week for more than a year.


  • Well, perhaps with "Fused", as you say, "it's just me". Who knows. I'll wait and see how I feel after I've heard the CD proper.

    On a side note, I have to agree with you about SitKoR; that album had some real staying power with me too...


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