Tuesday, 16 March 2010

One Way - Wrap Your Body - 1985 / 2010 - Vinyl Masterpiece

One Way is one of my all-time favourite groups. Their work throughout the late 70s as the Partners, and as One Way in the 80s was nothing short of unique thanks to the high creative skills of Al Hudson and Kevin McCords...two of Detroit's most unsung of soul music heroes. Their album catalog is also criminally ignored, so I am pleased that Vinyl Masterpiece have oped to re-issue this gem of an album from 1985. I say gem as although it may not be as consistent as it's predecessor, 1984's "Lady", but it contains 2 of the greatest songs they ever laid down on wax. Many will, of course, remember the uptempo scratchy precautionary funk of "Let's talk" which was a big radio hit in it's day, but it's the title track that is the one that really floats my boat! "Wrap Your Body" is still, 25 years on, a stunning slice of sexy midtempo soul music which oozes class, timelessness and for me evokes memories of summers past. This song was screaming to be added to the recent Universal masters 'best of' set but I fear the uptempo funkers took pride of place and denigrated the midtempos and ballads to memory. This song with it's freaky vocal synths, bongos and a brilliant rhythm guitar line is a mouth-watering affair.

Following this is a sexy, sensuous moment of bedroom bliss and amazing that this has a Kevin McCord feel when he was not on this actual album! "Believe In Me" is another flashback to a hot summer day at the beach and vocalist Candye Edwards (now McCord!) absolutely nails this beautifully intricate groove to the floor. I was furious when I paid import prices for the "Lady" album, which was reissued in Japan via Geffen to discover that it was taken straight from vinyl without any mastering at all. The masters obviously exist as "Don't Stop" was used on the recent 'Best Of" and it beggars belief that the album, as well as the Windjammer II set, were treated with such contempt. This album is also taken from vinyl but is of a higher standard. I am a firm believer that where masters are available then they ought to be used. Classy soul music is treated badly enough by the media as it is without the record labels sticking the knife in too! Rest assured this album sounds OK but for a trained ear one can tell the difference. Better to have it like this than not at all I suppose!

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe

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