Gary Moore
After Hours


4.5
superb

Review

by JamieTwort USER (35 Reviews)
February 8th, 2014 | 24 replies


Release Date: 1992 | Tracklist


Blues has always owed much of its appeal to the sincerity of its performers. Up until the mid-1960s the blues was very much considered a black man’s genre, belonging to those who lived and breathed the hardships that were conveyed in the music they performed. As a result many of the white blues players who emerged in the mid-late 60’s, predominately from England and Ireland, are often criticised by purists for lacking the level of sincerity that their forbearers had. There are of course some notable exceptions to this rule.

There are very few guitarists who are able to convey their feelings through their guitar playing as well as Gary Moore. This is perhaps the main reason why Moore is so highly respected amongst his peers and also by those who influenced him. Along with Peter Green, Moore is one of the few British blues guitarists to have earned such high levels of praise and respect from blues legends such as BB King and Albert King (among others). However, unlike Green, Gary Moore didn’t burst onto the blues scene until quite late in his career. Despite starting off as a bluesman, Moore swiftly moved on to other genres, gaining much of his recognition as a part time guitarist for rock band Thin Lizzy. It wasn’t until the pair of albums released between 1990 and 1992 that Moore really established himself as a blues player. The second of these albums, 1992’s After Hours, is often overlooked in favour of its predecessor, (the classic Still Got the Blues) despite being equally impressive in many respects and possessing much of what has made Moore such a highly regarded blues artist.

It only takes a couple of seconds for Moore’s unmistakeable guitar tone to come soaring over the top of Cold Day in Hell’s horn section, signalling the kind of emotion-fuelled guitar playing that dominates much of the album. While Moore’s playing style is always distinct throughout After Hours, there is no shortage of variation in his playing, songs like Separate Ways and The Hurt Inside feature a much more refined and laid back approach to his playing than is heard in the likes of The Blues is Alright or in the blistering version of John Mayall’s Key to Love. The former style is perhaps best displayed during a superb rendition of the Duster Bennett-penned Jumpin’ at Shadows, a song that had previously been performed by one of Moore’s idols, Peter Green. During this rendition Moore’s gentle, melancholic guitar playing is just as emotionally evocative as Green’s, a feat that is very rarely achieved by anyone. Even more melancholic is the mournful album closer Nothing’s the Same, which sees Moore at his most intimate. The song features one his most memorable and emotional vocal performances, which is augmented by his soft, subdued guitar playing, every note of which feels like a further expression of his sadness.

The highlight of the album comes in the form of Story of the Blues, one of the album’s six originals. This slow tempo blues ballad reaches its climax with one of Moore’s finest and most intensely emotional guitar solos. It is here where Moore really comes into his own. Every long sustain is held with the upmost intensity, every combination of notes seems so perfectly thought out whilst at the same time having a feeling of spontaneity. It’s as if he is pouring out his soul through his guitar playing, a characteristic that is largely responsible for the sincerity of his performances.

In many ways After Hours is one of the best representations of Moore as a guitarist. Everything that makes him standout from other guitarists of a similar ilk is presented on this album (well at least everything except his vast stylistic versatility). In addition, the album is also a great representation of his vocal abilities, featuring one of his stronger vocal performances, as well as his talents as song writer, with many of the album’s originals sitting comfortably alongside well-known blues classics. While After Hours may not have received quite the same level of acclaim that its predecessor has over the years, there’s no doubt that this album is one of the best and most consistent albums of Moore’s illustrious career.



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user ratings (31)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


This album needed a review badly. As always comments and constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated.

menawati
February 8th 2014


16587 Comments


nice review jt, pos
i prefer gary on things where he doesnt sing though

Pheromone
February 8th 2014


6449 Comments


RIP
Good to see this finally get a review

Digging: Wussy - Funeral Dress

manosg
Staff Reviewer
February 8th 2014


11321 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review Jamie, pos ofc. I slightly prefer this one to Still Got the Blues to be honest. Actually, I was thinking of reviewing Blues Alive in the near future in order to raise awareness regarding Moore's work.

Digging: Dio - Magica

Pheromone
February 8th 2014


6449 Comments


I was raised on Thin Lizzy but I must admit I have never taken time to listen to a full Moore release; Is this a good place to start?

rockandmetaljunkie
February 8th 2014


7486 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Regarding his Bluesy era, the previous album is the ideal place to start, but this is also a good starting point.

rockandmetaljunkie
February 8th 2014


7486 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fantastic choice Jamie, this album needed a review badly.

manosg
Staff Reviewer
February 8th 2014


11321 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This one and Still Got the Blues are his best blues releases. If you're more into rock/metal you can try Corridors Of Power or Run for Cover.



His live albums We Want Moore! and Blues Alive are very representative of his metal and blues work respectively.

dannyboy89
February 8th 2014


13404 Comments


Masterful review JT, have a pos.

Maybe you could be contributor someday.

Digging: Blue Oyster Cult - Agents of Fortune

JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


Well I have applied for contrib, so who knows I might not have to wait long.

Thanks everyone for the kind words and the pos's.

JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


I was raised on Thin Lizzy but I must admit I have never taken time to listen to a full Moore release; Is this a good place to start?


I second r&mjunkie and manosg's comments. Still Got the Blues is the ideal place to start if you're into blues and this is very similar in style (and quality) so you can't go wrong with this one either.

Most of his 80's rock albums are worth checking out if you're more into rock/metal than blues, although they're generally not as consistent as the two aforementioned blues albums. They do include some of his best songs though.

KILL
February 8th 2014


81231 Comments


gota check this

JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


i prefer gary on things where he doesnt sing though


Really? I can't imagine anyone finding his vocals on this and Still Got the Blues at all off putting, they're perfectly adequate. I can understand not liking his vocals on some of his much older and more recent material though.

JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


KILL bro listen to Story of the Blues, that solo is just wow.

menawati
February 8th 2014


16587 Comments


i dunno just something about the way he sings, its like shouting without shouting, really puts me off

JamieTwort
February 8th 2014


26988 Comments


What he lacks in vocal talent he certainly makes up for with his talents as a guitarist.

Jethro42
February 8th 2014


15567 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I only have Still Got The Blues by this guy which I rated 4.5/5

Good job on the review, Jamie.

JamieTwort
February 9th 2014


26988 Comments


Thanks Jethro. If you like Still Got the Blues so much if I have no doubt that you will love this one too.

zakalwe
February 9th 2014


25919 Comments


Quality JT.

JamieTwort
February 9th 2014


26988 Comments


Cheers Zak.



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