Thursday, 19 February 2009

Touch Of New York

I was really surprised by this album. I expected something more...urban, rough and street, perhaps with a rap edge yet no! The songs are traditional soul outings with real instrumentation and real singers, so this was a very nice surprise. I was warmed by it from the starting orders. The vocals on this album are from the likes of Gary Brown and Marc Dorsey so we should know that the emotion – a key ingredient – is ever-present. The opening song, “Inspiration Love” is an optimistic and positive slant on love. As I said before much of today's music scene cannot see past the booty-shaking and knocking boots element, what this sort of song does is re-introduce a wider, deeper and dare I say it, a more real take on love. More like this, please, let's have some sanity! I absolutely fell in love with the jazzy-edged “Dreams Life Ocean” with its cool sax, warm keys and rumbling bass courtesy of none other than the legendary Doug Wimbush! I really see this as a highlight of this album, and I hope it gets the exposure it deserves!“Everything About You” is another cracking effort, and along the same theme of the opening song and following this song is the gorgeous Marc Dorsey led song called “Just Another Day”. Marc Dorsey has a great voice and has the ability to crossover from modern R&B cuts to classier, adult material. Take his “Follow My Heart” from the Club 1600 Project a few years back and point is made. The blinding “Just Another Day”is further evidence to the fact that this man has got real soul! A more uptempo effort from Marc is the excellent “Givin' It Up” with a slight Latino flavour, horns stab and synths predominant; a very nice inclusion. Please also check out the superb “Heart Beats”because this is similar to the best material contained on the excellent “Park Place” CD a few years ago. Like that? Then you'll like this. “One Chance” is another treat but not as good as the tremendous “Love You More” which has real sparkle and pizazz. Like I said, this CD was a surprise, and I think you'll agree that New York should be known for more of this than a lot of the hard rap / street stuff that seems to hog the limelight!

Barry Towler