WHITESNAKE - Flesh And Blood (Review)

information persons: 
Release Date: 
May 10
Musical Style: 
Hard Rock
Friday, May 10, 2019
The Snake is back! David Coverdale and his band of interchangeable merry men return after a production delay and a question mark over just how long Whitesnake Inc. can continue in light of a decreased vocal ability from the Governor.
Continuing their journey on the snaketrain is duelling guitarists Reb Beach and Joel Hoekstra, with Reb delivering a bigger hand in the album’s inner workings and Joel getting his first chance to work on new material after joining before The Purple Album.
So what to make of this latest addition to the Whitesnake catalogue? Flesh And Blood may not be a very original title and the artwork looks like a 5 minute photoshop re-arrangement of the band’s 1994 ‘Greatest Hits’ cover, but inside is a more appealing discovery.
The band sounds energised and firing on all cylinders. David Coverdale’s vocals are managed as well as possible throughout the album, but they are heavily processed and a long way from his peak as one of the world’s best rock vocalists. Thankfully he still carries the same attitude and presence as he always has, making it hard to fault the performance overall.
Flesh And Blood sounds like a hybrid of Good To Be Bad, Slip Of The Tongue and maybe a little Slide It In. Plus it has its own little personality too.
The album gets off to a rollicking start with the 4x hard rock bombardment of Good To See You Again, Gonna Be Alright, the commercial friendly single Shut Up & Kiss Me and the cheesy Hey You (You Make Me Rock), which should give a writers credit to Dann Huff for its borrowing from Giant’s Lay It On The Line.
Quality pauses for two songs that just annoy me - the mid-tempo romp of Always & Forever (annoying chorus hook) and the ballad When I Think Of You (annoying chorus and lead guitar hook).
We’re back into the rollicking for the stampeding Trouble Is Your Middle Name and Flesh & Blood.
Well I Never has another very average chorus I could easily skip, but the near 7 minute moody Heart Of Stone is perfect.
Get Up brings memories of Coverdale/Page’s Feeling Hot, while the sweet acoustic After All has a Sailing Ships vibe to it.
Closing the album is the pretty average 6 minute Zeppelinesque rocker Sands Of Time.

At 13 tracks and 59 minutes, the album is too long. I could happily cut 3 of those tunes easily as there’s 4 fillers here. I would also note that I don’t like the sequencing either. I’d opt for an entirely different running order for a smoother flow.
But the majority of the album is still classic Whitesnake and thoroughly enjoyable, so for that reason I’m happy to rate this pretty highly, knowing that I can creature a CDR or playlist with a few less songs and my own preferred running order.
The Snake is alive!