Thursday, 19 February 2009

Bennson - Let The Love

This is definitely what the doctor ordered! Hailing from Melbourne, Australia comes the SUPERB Bennson with a set of soulful boogie tunes that could have been recorded for a major label back in 1982! The vibe is definitely of a “good times”nature and the keys, horns and other instrumentation are exactly what this soul-starved nation of ours is clammering for. Bennson has utilised a lot of home-grown talent for this CD, his first CD in fact, and if anyone says that Soul Music does not exist down under then look no more! Fans of Confection, or any quality 80s soul for that matter, will immediately warm to this. For me it is an ESSENTIAL purchase and yet another inclusion into the winners' circle for 2008. Every track is a winner. There are no fillers and not a second of this CD is wasted. Running at 12 songs and just under an hour you are guaranteed an hour of pure soul heaven. You will, I know, agree with me that the CD blasts off in an amazing fashion with the brassy “Whatever It Is” and vocalist Abby Joyce steps into the Luther / Change early 80s club groove with complete ease. Also, check out the extended mix which caps off the CD. Karl Wagner is a smoother vocalist in the vein of St. Paul Peterson and delivers the groovier “Can't Get Enough” with real relish and plenty of keys and vibes. The brassy Don Blackmon-ish “Incredible”is SUPERB and Christin Derelas sounds extremely sexy to boot...a highly desirable combination indeed! Another blast is the highly desirable prancer, “Let The Love” which is so soulful it hurts, and I can also highly recommend the essential groove of “Accidental Lover” which could have been released by Capitol in the early 80s. Think High Fashion and you're not way off the mark. Simply fantastic, and a tasty duet to boot. I'll tell you this – if you are NOT floored by the wonderful “One Minute Left” then something is seriously wrong with your soul! This is absolutely breathtaking, a step to the left and warm, deep, rich and the trumpet courtesy of Ross Irwin is a real killer. The excellent stepper fronted by Carmen Hendricks towers over “The Greatest” and adds some Prelude panache to proceedings. “Step To The Plate” it certainly does and with conviction and unwavering power as well. Bennson is a powerhouse for the funky choon...his ability to pick the right voice for the right tune is second to none, and he falls into the rare category of producer / arrangers such as Jeff Lorber, who you recall delivered some seriously soulful choonage in the 80s. Enough said. His love of music oozes from the wonderful “I Need Music” which features the brilliant Paul Mac Innes. I am so, so impressed with this album...yet more quality from Australia, showing the Americans how it SHOULD be done, and giving us some timeless, quality dancefloor friendly tunes that raise the spirit, move the feet and set the soul free. Pure class in every sense and I can no nothing but give the album the highest praise and recommendation possible.

Barry Towler

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