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Steve Hackett - Cured CD (album) cover


Steve Hackett


Eclectic Prog

2.41 | 288 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Well, this one is usually considered, all in all, as Hackett's weakest, and, I have to admit, when I rushed out and bought it, all those years ago when it had just been released, I was very disappointed. This was a trimmed down Hackett, producing what seemed to be, in essence, a pop album! What happened to the man who had released four classic albums prior to this? However...however. Over the years, I have grown to like this more and more. Now I rate it highly. Ok, Steve's voice isn't at its best here, though it has improved immeasurably over the years since, but the music is, in fact, catchy and, it has to be said, as good as any pop songs released at the time. What it does do, is demonstrate Steven's huge talent for composing in different styles, often unrelated to each other, yet always retaining that Hackett touch. 'Hope I Don't Wake' is a bright song to open the album. It has multi-layered vocals, and Steve harmonises with himself superbly. I have always felt that his harmonies are very good and this proves it. His guitar is more in the background on most of this album, but it still comes out at brief moments to great effect. 'Picture Postcard' is another pop song, but with superior melody, and nice guitar work here. Steve sings in probably too high a range on this album, but it has to be said, he is still superior to Steve Howe! 'Can't Let Go' has a less memorable verse than the first two songs, but the chorus somewhat saves it, with a little guitar thrown in nicely here and there, especially at the end of the song. 'The Air-Conditioned Nightmare' is probably the song most fans would choose as their favourite on the album. Ironically it is an instrumental, with brother John on bass pedal duties here. Of course, this track is dominated by Mr Hackett's supreme guitar work. A very good, slightly menacing piece, with Nick Magnus's keyboards more to the fore here as well. 'Funny Feeling' is another ok piece, again with nice harmonies and brief but effective guitar work at the start, and at the finish. 'A Cradle Of Swans' is one of my favourites. It is another good example of his exceptional acoustic work. A fine, melodic piece that would sit nicely on any of his acoustic albums. 'Overnight Sleeper' is, in my opinion, the hidden gem on this record. I love the guitar work here; it is played in almost Flamenco style. The whole song is fast paced and does indeed call to mind a train journey. Of course, John's flute only adds to the melody and atmosphere here. Probably my favourite on the album. Finally, 'Turn Back Time' is a slow ballad, devoid of frills and excesses, being instead a gentle and quiet piece that one can relax to and enjoy. A good ending to the album. No, this is not the strongest Hackett record, especially if you are looking for sparkling electric guitar work, but it is far better than most people believe it is. Having seen, over the years, how he can adapt and change his style at will, this is just another example of his diversity. When he finally regains ownership of the rights to this album, I will, without hesitation, buy the (hoped for) remaster that may be released. I will give it three stars, knowing that is isn't everyone's cup of tea, but, personally, when in the right mood for it, I would edge that up towards the four mark.
chessman | 3/5 |


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