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Articles Home » 2003 Articles » Liesegang - 2003 No Strings Attached
Liesegang - 2003 No Strings Attached

Bill Liesegang - guitars, bass, keyboards
Glenn Hughes - vocals
John Wetton - vocals
Tony Thurlow - vocals
P.J. Phillips - bass, backing vocals
Tony Muschamps - bass
Zeus B. Held - keyboards
John Sharp - keyboards
Thomas Lang - drums
Geoff Dugmore - drums
Barry Fitzgerald - drums
Clive Mayuyu - drums

Journeyman guitarist Bill Liesegang gets the spotlight at long last! Belatedly though, as this particular set of tunes has its origins as far back as 1996, and in Japan only. Again, thanks to the Escape Music team, this often overlooked album is now available to the western world on a domestic release, and a goodie it is too. From London, Bill's history is extensive, having played with many bands and in many studio sessions - too numerous to name here. However, during the mid-nineties, Trevor Horn signed Billy up to his company, and soon he was writing songs alongside John Wetton, some of them appearing on this album. You'd be thinking that with 16 tracks, 73 minutes of music, and the fact that Billy is a guitarist of some repute, that this is gonna be widdly diddly affair all over again. Thankfully that is not the case. As a safety measure, three singers are employed to give the album some credibility. Musically it's an intriguing blend of high-quality melodic rock (veering off into metal territory in some cases), with the guitars always being prevalent, and the arrangements exciting. If you combine the hardness of Hughes/Thrall with the string-bending talent of people like Steve Stevens or Joe Satriani for instance, then you've got a fair idea what this sounds like.

The Songs
Let's start with the vocal tracks. A killer opening with 'King Of The Western World'. Goodness, this is indeed Hughes/Thrall revisited. Fantastic power rock that'll have you singing 'I Got Your Number'!! I wonder what Glenn was thinking when singing this one? Deja Vu perhaps? He sings on the next one 'Crying For Love' - an impassioned plea sung on top of a slow/mid-tempo burner. The next highlight is 'Flesh n Blood' - a pompous workout that only a guy like John Wetton can help put together. Think of those Phenomena projects and this is where a song like this was born. John also gets to soar on 'Thrill Of It All', a track which could easily find a home on his 'Battle Lines' project. 'The Night Will Soon Be Gone' is as hypnotic a ballad I've ever heard. The soulful Hughes strikes again, the soothing keyboard layers and guitar lines will getcha everytime! Conversely the two tunes that Tony Thurlow sing on are the least memorable, heavy metal like vocals not helping the cause. Of the instrumentals, there are plenty of moments to be had. Check out the exceptional 'Cryonic Babylon' - the musical theme could very well have been worked on by Messrs Craig and Greene for their Harlan Cage project. The brief interlude that is 'Cloud Eleven' soars off the map too annoying soon in my books - it's so majestic! 'Revenge' is probably the pick of the bunch, an instrumental version of Hughes/Thrall.. wow! Meanwhile, 'Midnite Surfer' is a soulful blues excursion, while Accept fans would be thinking they've had a memory relapse listening to the blistering rendition of 'Sabre Danse Macabre' - the Wolf Hoffmann like attack is one out of the bag!

In Summary
An entertaining set, great variety among 16 tunes. Lovely to see that not everything is exclusive to the Japanese, even though it takes a few years to land. The good news for Liesegang fans is the fact that he's very active, and very much in demand. A new second solo album is anticipated riding on the back of this one. And if he turns up on the next Harlan Cage album (is there gonna be a new one Roger?), then all the better. In the meantime everyone, get familiar with Bill Liesegang.

Track Time: 73.01

Track Listing:
01 King Of The Western World (v GH)
02 No Strings Attached
03 Crying For Love (v GH)
04 Cloud Eleven
05 Flesh n Blood (v JW)
06 White Island (Celina)
07 Thrill Of It All (v JW)
08 Revenge
09 The Night Will Soon Be Gone (v GH)
10 Cryonic Babylon
11 Live By The Gun (v TT)
12 Waiting For The Sun
13 Dogs (Of War) (v TT)
14 Midnite Surfer
15 Hammerfist
16 Sabre Danse Macabre

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