Album review roundup: Huge releases by Lionel Richie, Ian Gillan, Runrig and more | Music | Entertainment

Lionel Richie: Hello From Las Vegas (Capitol)

4 stars

Not content to rest on his wardrobe full of laurels, Richie is a tireless live performer as his recent BST Hyde Park show proved.

This perfectly executed set recorded live at Zappos Theatre, Planet Hollywood Resort, zings and sparkles with Richie’s solo hits and Commodores classics.

And those big hits roll off his smooth tongue all night long, from smoochers Stuck On You, Hello and Three Times A Lady to floor fillers Dancing On The Ceiling and Brick House, Richie shows his class as he and the audience celebrate these timeless songs.

Delivering a definitive performance, this is an essential collectors addition to any fan of soulful pop and rock.

Ian Gillan: Contractual Obligation (earMUSIC)

4 stars

Filling a rare hiatus in his busy schedule, the bona fide voice of rock, legendary Deep Purple vocalist Ian Gillan, toured with the Don Airey Band across Eastern Europe.

The result is a refreshing and fun-filled extravaganza of both Purple classics and solo songs.

Accompanied by a different orchestra each night, this collection of performances swoops, soars and smashes headlong into Perfect Strangers, Demon’s Eye, Razzle Dazzle and classics Smoke On The Water and Black Night.

Deep cuts proliferate on these recordings with guitarist Simon McBride staking his claim as a guitar great with scintillating fretwork.

This release adds another string to the bow of an iconic artist who first found international fame on the original recording of Jesus Christ Superstar.

Artist Lionel Richie (Image: Getty Images)

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Hello From Las Vegas, Lionel Richie (Image: NC)

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Ian Gillan, Contractual Obligation (Image: NC)

Runrig: The Last Dance-Farewell Concert (Sony)

5 stars

Saving the last dance for true fans of the band, Runrig almost brought Scotland to a standstill with their final ever show on home soil.

This dramatic three-hour performance to 50,000 fans in front of Stirling Castle, revealed the deep love and affection held for these veteran Celtic-rock legends. 

Original member Donnie Munro also makes an emotional return to sing a Gaelic tour-de-force on two songs.

This monumental musical milestone documents the final recording in a long and glittering career of an incredible genre-leading band.

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Runrig, The Last Dance – Farewell Concert (Image: NC)

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Creedence Clearwater Revival, Live at Woodstock (Image: NC)

Creedence Clearwater Revival: Live at Woodstock (Craft Recordings)

4 stars

Lifted from the cutting room floor, dusted down and mastered, this 50-year-old headlining concert from Woodstock 1969 finally sees the light of day.

Pulled from the original Woodstock recording by bandleader John Fogerty, who wrongly judged this performance to be substandard, many forget what an incendiary live band CCR was on this outstanding performance alone.

Crammed with their big-hitters Born on the Bayou, Bad Moon Rising, Green River and Proud Mary, Fogerty hollers and howls to mighty effect as the whole band play their socks and sandals off.

CCR released three classic albums in 1969 and, listening to Keep On Chooglin’ and Suzie Q, Live at Woodstock should have made it a fantastic four.

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Rosalie Cunningham (Image: NC)

Rosalie Cunningham: (Esoteric/ Cherry Red)

4 stars

Former front lady of Purson, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Rosalie Cunningham has produced eight eclectic tracks bursting with a supple blend of musical styles and layered substance.

With her psychedelic roots to the fore, Cunningham has put all of her art and soul into this first solo recording.

Her retro theatrical styling follows into the music as evidenced on Dethroning Of The Party Queen and the epic A Yarn From A Wheel.

The heavily fuzzed-up guitars shimmer with a psychedelic haze throughout an album that tactilely wears its classic rock influences proudly upon its deep velvet sleeve.

An alluring natural performer, this dazzling debut should attract heavy rotation from those who dig Renaissance, Uriah Heep and Mandy Morton/Spriguns.

ALL REVIEWS PAUL DAVIES: CHECK OUT HIS WEBSITE  decibelreport.com FOR MORE MUSIC INTERVIEWS, FEATURES AND LIVE REVIEWS

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