Suretone Records/Interscope Records
You Know His Name
Chris Cornell had already struck out on his own in 1999 following the collapse of Soundgarden and released his first solo album ‘Euphoria Morning’. As an album this broke the mould as to what Cornell was capable of, it showed a mournful and soulful side which was prematurely cut short with Cornell joining Audioslave. By 2006, the ‘James Bond’ franchise came knocking and Cornell was propositioned to provide the theme ‘You Know My Name’, to the latest movie ‘Casino Royale’. The success of this movie catapulted Cornell into the forefront of popular music and opened one of the best rock/metal voices of recent times to the masses.
Capitalising upon the success of ‘You Know My Name’, Chris Cornell released his second solo album ‘Carry On’ in 2007. Unlike ‘Euphoria Morning’, ‘Carry On’ featured a blend of hard rock, blues and soul delivered through a highly polished production that was guaranteed to shift albums to Cornell’s new acquired fanbase. However, ‘Carry On’ is not a shift away from the music that Cornell was comfortable with and songs such as ‘Poison Eye’, ‘Killing Birds’ and ‘Silence the Voices’ are classic Cornell while tracks like ‘Scar on the Sky’ show an ‘Across the Universe’ influence from The Beatles whilst the riff to ‘Your Soul Today’ is straight from the early 70’s output of The Rolling Stones. However, it is the haunting, forlorn and brooding cover of Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’ which oddly adds another dimension to ‘Carry On’. Superficial pop fans that are attracted to the album through ‘You Know My Name’ will identify with ‘Billie Jean’ as a familiar cover. But, those who know Cornell will appreciate its sparse and soulful humility in a way which only Cornell can achieve.
As an album, ‘Carry On’ may not initially pull you in, but after a few listens you will find that the album is among some of Cornell’s best solo work.
Adam McCann / MHF Magazine