As you may expect from the inclusion of Larry Dunn there is a distinct Earth, Wind & Fire rhythm threading through all the songs, and I think that the brassy stabs and rhythm guitar are right in the bag from the word go - Tim Owens' totally enjoys his part in "Get It Off" immensely, and the flavour is both totally today yet mid 1970s to boot. Also, the following cut, "What's Your fantasy" enjoys some funky licks, percussion and soulful, zingy strings. This is blindingly good and still doesn't equal the amazing ballad which is track three, "I'm Crazy", featuring Orlando Johnson on vocals, a voice that has the echo of Lenny Williams in places. I am, as you should be aware, a sucker for a string section. What the guys have cooked up here is almost in THAT mid 1980s Columbia mode...Think Rodney Franklin's "Love Is The Answer" or Philip Bailey's "It's Our Time"...I have played this song so many times I'm sure the CD has burn marks on it! The strings are simply out of this world and all concerned have conspired to give this a wonderfully haunting atmosphere. If only there were more songs of this nature about today. I, for one, would be a much happier man.
The slammin' beats and Philly-ish guitar break boundaries with the edgy horn riffs on the uptempo number "I'm Not The Same Man" - a track that could easily become a modern soulful house thumper. Now this is a tasty thought, especially as it's increasingly the case that US House music resembles quality 70s soul dance material! the strong horn-filled EW&F effort "Can You Feel It" won't disappoint, nor will the super-strong "Luv Is Comin' Up"; a track that should get some feet on the floor. This is brilliant material from the US in 2010 and I cannot get enough of it! "Come To Me" rollicks along atop a shifting, shuffling gait, funky guitar licks and horns, and better than most of today's US material. The Zapp-like slammer "Love Me Like U Do" features vocalist Rahmlee, complete with hand-clapping beat. This is almost Roger Troutman circa 1980! Putting the CD to bed is the lovely and serene ballad, "In The Name Of Luv" which features Orlando Johnson. Albums like this, from the USA at least, are very few and far between. Every track a winner; no fills and no compromises. Another essential soul set for your collection.
The Vibe Scribe