Just heard the very sad news that Gary Moore died earlier today. A great guitarist and songwriter who always put on a good live show every time I saw him. This is my only published review of any of Gary’s solo albums so will serve as my personal tribute.
There was a time in the early eighties when you could have been excused for believing that Ritchie Blackmore, David Coverdale and Gary Moore met up in a smoky bar somewhere every six months and traded band members in some ‘fantasy rock band’ game. Okay so I may be being a bit sarcastic but Cozy Powell was in Rainbow and Whitesnake, Neil Murray did Whitesnake and Gary Moore, Ian Paice did likewise and Don Airey did all three.
‘Corridors Of Power’ was Gary Moore’s second solo album and featured nine solid bluesy hard rock tracks very much in the early Whitesnake vein. That was not surprising given the rhythm section of Ian Paice and Neil Murray had been lifted straight from Coverdale’s crew after the Saints An’ Sinners sessions had ended. Indeed opening track ‘Don’t Take Me For A Loser’ is almost more Whitesnake than Whitesnake with the driving rhythm section and catchy hook. With a more polished or dare I say ‘full-time’ vocalist it could probably have made the singles chart. To be fair to Moore though his vocal performance is pretty good throughout and was far better than the woeful John Sloman who for some reason was brought in to sing live when they toured the album. ‘Always Gonna Love You’ is like a slightly more British sounding REO Speedwagon (think ‘Keep On Loving You’ era) and is another quality track. Next up we get the strange choice of Free track ‘Wishing Well’ which surprisingly works rather well given that although Moore’s vocals are more than competent he is certainly no Paul Rodgers and his guitar style is far heavier than that of Paul Kossoff. The only minor gripe is the lyrical errors which there is really no excuse for. ‘Gonna Break My Heart Again’ is nothing very special and ‘Falling In Love With You’ is too eighties big ballad for my liking. They offer a slightly disappointing end to Side One.
Side Two kicks off with the heavy minor epic ‘End Of The World’ in which Moore really gives it some heavy guitar playing and a great vocal. ‘Rockin Every Night’ follows and is easily the albums weakest track despite Paice’s great drumming. In fact Paice gets a writing credit so significant is his input to the song. Moore’s vocal shines again in the track ‘Cold Hearted’ which is up next. Again it is very Whitesnake. Album closer ‘I Can’t Wait Until Tomorrow’ is another classy heavy epic. It is almost like a heavy Parisienne Walkways and ensures the album ends on a high note.
Gary Moore went more down the blues path in later years but this is a real gem of an early eighties hard rock album typical of the British rock sound of the time and is well worth four stars.
© Martin Leedham. Originally published on RYM January 2009