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Album Reviews

Faith & Grace: A Family Journey 1953-1976

Artist The Staple Singers
Label Universal/ Concord
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 20 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
It's a common misconception that the Staple Singers both began and ended their career at Stax Records during a fertile, hit-making spell between the late-'60s and mid-'70s. But as this superlative archival box set reveals, this venerable institution of Chicago gospel-soul was birthed some twenty years or so earlier at… Continue>

Duets - Love & Soul

Artist Teddy Pendergrass
Label Cleopatra
Sheep Score
By Duncan Payne | 10 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Hmmm, where to start? As an avid Philly Soul devotee and someone who ranks Teddy Pendergrass among one of his favourite singers of all-time, I fought desperately against any pre-conceived notions I had about this posthumous collection of twelve duets. Songs such as ‘Love TKO’, ‘Close The Door’, ‘Come Go… Continue>

Dream

Artist ANGIE STONE
Label Shanachie
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 10 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
It's been sixteen years since this honey-throated ex-Sequence and Vertical Hold singer originally from Columbia, South Carolina, released her debut solo platter, 'Mahoganny Soul,' an album that placed her firmly in the vanguard of the neo-soul movement alongside D'Angelo, Erykah Badu and Maxwell. A decade and a half on from… Continue>

'Reach For the Sky: The Change Anthology

Artist CHANGE
Label Groove Line
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 10 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Without Chic there would have been no Change. Conceived in 1980 as a New York-based dance music studio ensemble by Guadeloupe-born  entrepreneur/producer Jacques Fred Petrus (who ran a production company called Little Macho), their music was closely modelled after Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards' chart-busting late-'70s disco act. Ever the… Continue>

Momentum

Artist Soulpersona
Label SPR
Sheep Score
By Duncan Payne | 10 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Brighton-based label owner, producer, remixer and arranger extraordinaire Soulpersona has been at the forefront of the UK neo-soul scene for a number of years. His busy schedule has seen him work with the likes of Charlie Wilson, Jody Watley and Jocelyn Brown, and his collaborations with the sultry Australian-born fellow… Continue>

Evolution

Artist NARADA MICHAEL WALDEN
Label Tarpan
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 04 November 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Originally a jazz-rock drummer who was Billy Cobham's replacement in the Mahavishnu Orchestra and also played with fusion supergroup Weather Report (on their 'Black Market' LP) in the mid-'70s, Kalamazoo-born Narada Michael Walden enjoyed some disco hits under his own name at the end of that decade (including 'I Shoulda… Continue>

Check It Out

Artist Tavares
Label Soul Music Records/Caroline International
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 30 September 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Hailing from New Bedford, Massachusetts, this family vocal quintet - whose parents originated from Cape Verde, an island off the west coast of Africa - are fondly remembered by soul fans for their evergreen '70s hits 'She's Gone,' 'It Only Takes A Minute,' and 'Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel.' … Continue>

Today - My Way'/'Nancy - Naturally

Artist Nancy Wilson
Label Soul Music/Caroline International
Sheep Score
By Charles Waring | 30 September 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
With her tart delivery, supple phrasing and clear-diction, Ohio-born Nancy Wilson possesses one of the most immediately identifiable voices in black music. She's always been hard to pigeonhole stylistically, elegantly straddling the divide between jazz, soul and pop. This twofer captures her in the mid-'60s, combining a couple of overlooked… Continue>

Soul Shine

Artist Various Artists
Label Expansion
Sheep Score
By Mark Devlin | 07 September 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
When it comes to compilations that reflect what's happening on the modern soul scene, there's no label better at doing them than the UK's own Expansion imprint, which celebrates its 30th anniversary next year. The label's latest offering, compiled by the company's main mover and shaker, the redoubtable Ralph Tee,… Continue>

The Complete Atco/Atlantic Singles Vol. 1: 1960-1966

Artist Ben E. King
Label Real Gone Music/Soul Music
By Charles Waring | 01 September 2015
Published in: Album Reviews
Luck was no stranger to the career of the late Ben E. King, who got his first big break when his vocal group, The Five Crowns, became a rapidly-installed new incarnation of The Drifters when the manager of the latter group sacked all of its members in 1958 prior to… Continue>
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