Hugh Cornwell
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Hugh Cornwell


Band Rock Punk


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"Dam good 4/5"

Hugh Cornwell, not that he really needed to, proves once and for all that he is still as full of ideas as ever, on an album also available as a free MP3 from his own website.
Musically, this Liam Watson (White Stripes)-produced romp is an enjoyable razzle through the mind of the singer's 17-year solo career. Opening with Wrong Side Of The Tracks, both a splendid pastiche of, and respectful answer to, Hendrix's Crosstown Traffic, the pace rarely lets up on an LP that, in part due to its back-to-basics rock'n'roll aesthetic, makes it something of a cousin to the likes of Lou Reed's storming 1988 LP, New York. There's still a huge lump of gleeful tension on show too, as the LP flits between hefty riffery and skewed melody. "It's a delightful nightmare" Hugh intones from behind boxy compression, musing on the nature of dreams, reality and love; verdant subject matter, presented dutifully by this ratted poet. The band-centric sonics place Cornwell as part of a unit rather than a soloist backed by a band. As a result this is a very coherent album with rather a timeless quality.
- Joe Shooman - Record Collector

"Former Strangler revisits analogue roots"

After 17 years in The Stranglers and another 17 as a solo artist, Hugh Cornwell isn't so much éminence grise as cuddly punk uncle. Recorded at Toe Rag studios by modern-day Joe Meek Liam Watson, Hooverdam is a defiantly no-budget nod to his heroes, all gritty riffs and hard won wisdom. Television-esque instrumental "Philip K Ridiculous" should probably have remained a studio in-joke, but when he growls "I got pretty good teeth" in vampiric "Crosstown Traffic" pastiche "Wrong Side Of The Tracks", it's proof he's not lost his bite.
- Paul Moody - Uncut 3/5

"Solo album number eight for the former hughinblack."

Cornwell has been a solo artist longer than he was a Strangler, and that most intense of splits - one that makes the Dave Gilmour/Roger Waters feud look positively amicable - still shoes no sign of healing. Recorded in December 2007 at ToeRag Studios, this album has an unabashedly analogue, ancient rock sound. There's Hendrix-referencing Wrong Side Of The Tracks and a playful Slow Boat To Trowbridge (the soon-to-be-60 Cornwell pleading he's "not ready for salad days"), while the best track, Beat Of My Heart, with its wearied, flat delivery, is oddly Graham Coxon-like. The sole nod to the Stranglers era, a punningly-titled instrumental, Philip K Ridiculous, obliquely references the jerky art-rock of the Raven era. Too much an exercise in nostalgia to be classic Cornwell, but still a lovingly eccentric set.
- David Buckley - Mojo 3/5


IHCD52 / IH52 (Vinyl)
- CD & DVD Digipak
- Vinyl
- FREE Download

'People; Places; Pieces'
- 3 CD Box Set

'Dirty Dozen'

'Beyond Elysian Fields'

'Under Her Spell'



Hugh Cornwell completed his new album Hooverdam and first film Blueprint (a live studio performance of the film and interview) in Toerag Studios in 2008 with producer Liam Watson, best known for producing the White Stripes’ Elephant. Hooverdam is also available worldwide as a high-quality free download from Hugh’s own website and from The physical release is a triple-sleeved digipak featuring both album and film in one exclusive CD / DVD package. The album is also available on vinyl.

Hugh Cornwell is one of the UK's finest song-writing talents and accomplished live performers. The original guitarist, singer and main songwriter in The Stranglers enjoyed massive UK and European success with ten hit albums and twenty-one top forty singles in the 17-year period he was in the band. The Stranglers etched themselves into the UK's musical psyche with Peaches, No More Heroes, Golden Brown, Always The Sun, Grip, Nice N Sleazy, Duchess, Walk On By, Strange Little Girl and Skin Deep.

Cornwell has reveled in his musical freedom ever since a sold out Stranglers gig at London's Alexandra Palace in the summer of 1990, when he announced he was leaving the group.

He has released seven solo albums, Wolf (1988), Wired (1993), Guilty (1997), Hifi (2001), Beyond Elysian Fields (2004), Footprints In The Desert (2005), Dirty Dozen (2006); and three collaborations, Nosferatu (1979) featuring Robert Williams, CCW (1992) featuring Roger Cook and Andy West, and Sons Of Shiva (2002) featuring Sex W Johnston.

Cornwell's book, The Stranglers: Song by Song, was published in November 2001 by Sanctuary Publishing. In it he explains for the first time the real stories behind the Stranglers extensive catalogue of songs. In October 2004 Cornwell's autobiography A Multitude of Sins was published by Harper Collins.

The Stranglers' most successful song, Golden Brown, featured on the soundtrack to Guy Ritchie's Hollywood blockbuster Snatch; whilst Peaches was used as the opening sequence of the hit film Sexy Beast as well as in a Nike TV ad for 2002's Football World Cup.

A triple live album, People Places Pieces is available at and contains dazzling live renditions of 45 tracks spanning the whole of Cornwell's career. It spans his time with the Stranglers from 1974 to 1990, plus his critically acclaimed solo career to date and features remarkable performances of old and new standards.

“[Hooverdam] is a cousin to Lou Reeds storming 1988 LP, New York. A very coherent album with a timeless quality” Record Collector.

“He remains a hugely popular and prolific performer who’s songwriting retains it’s fiery eloquence and whose gigs still crackle with electricity” Class Rock.

“He’s been vastly underrated as a solo performer in the past, but even the most lapsed of fans should revel in this LP release.” The Fly Magazine.