California Breed frontman Glenn Hughes says his young bandmate, 23-year-old Andrew Watt, is the nearest thing to his late colleague Mel Galley.
Hughes and Galley were bandmates in Trapeze before the guitarist moved on to work with Whitesnake, Phenomena and Cozy Powell. He died of cancer in 2008.
As California Breed prepare for the launch of their self-titled debut album, Hughes tells Tight But Loose: “Andrew was born in 1991, but he sounds like he’s from the psychedelic era. He is not really a 70s or 80s guy – his main influence runs from 1968 and then leaps into 1994 with Pearl Jam and Soundgarden.
“I haven’t played with a guitar player in that vein since Mel Galley. He was a little nervous at first but he has that New York swagger and he’s ambitious.”
And the frontman has praise for drummer Jason Bonham, who previously worked with Hughes in Black Country Communion. “Jason Bonham can now really put his hat next to his father’s,” he says. “This is the greatest drumming he’s ever done on record by far.”
Hughes intends to focus on California Breed for the rest of the year, with plans for a UK tour pencilled in during the autumn.
But he hasn’t given up on a side-project he began with Stone Temple Pilots before they changed direction by firing frontman Scott Weiland and replacing him with Linkin Park vocalist Chester Bennington.
Hughes reports: “I did start an album with the guys from Stone Temple Pilots a while back. They went back to do some touring and I formed California Breed. I may well complete that album with them when the time is appropriate for me do so – but right now my focus is this new band.”