Lloyd Cole's second solo album, 1991's Don't Get Weird on Me, Babe, was about a half-decade ahead of its time. If it had come out in 1996, after Richard Davies' Cardinal project, the High Llamas' Gideon Gaye, and the new belief in indie circles that Pet Sounds and Burt Bacharach were musical icons worthy of veneration, this would have slotted right in. In the year bracketed by My Bloody Valentine's Loveless and Nirvana's Nevermind, Don't Get Weird on Me, Babe (title courtesy of Raymond Carver) was considered a self-indulgent oddity. In retrospect, however, it's clearly one of Lloyd Cole's finest works. The album is divided into two distinct parts…
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. John Hicks works in some really wonderful company here – a trio with bassist Curtis Lundy and drummer Idris Muhammad – both of whom really add a lot to the date! We're always big fans of Lundy's sound on bass – and his approach here has the same warm-rolling quality you'd find in his own best 80s work – really helping to push Hicks' lyrical agenda on the piano with a rhythmic support that's tremendous. Muhammad's pretty great too – definitely on the understated side of his talents, that nicely subtle sound he developed in the 80s – and Hicks, as always, is more than a cut above most of his contemporaries, and continues a long legacy of extremely soulful work on the keys of the piano.
For the real Disco fans Ben Liebrand has selected the best 12-inches from the disco era. Moreover, he ensures that only the best available recordings are used so that the quality of the CD is excellent. For Grand 12-Inches, Vol. 14 special extended versions are selected from top artists such as Earth Wind & Fire, Donna Summer, Chic, Ashford and Simpson, Shalamar and Cher.
While at least one track from this album showed up decades ago on an Epic compilation, the remainder of this album has remained in the Columbia archives until Reel Music had it remastered and release. The sound is incredible - even with some of the tracks in mono, This is the result of Steve Alaimo's production at the AGP studios in Memphis, the Memphis Boys backing (see the Ace album for more detail) supported by the Memphis Horns, and Bill Lacey's remastering. This is a stunning album - strong songs, great production and Gwen McCrae in fine voice. The hits - which are certainly evident 40 years later were buried as Columbia was in the midst of moving to its HBS-inspired black music strategy under the leadership of Clive Davis. This is a great addition to any 70s soul library.
Eminem protégé Obie Trice's sophomore album and follow-up to the platinum-plus Cheers finally appears after several delayed release dates. Naturally, there's a well-stocked arsenal of guest stars, including 50 Cent, Nate Dogg, Akon and even Em himself. Sadly, Second Round's not so much an album of goofy drinking anthems in the mold of "Got Some Teeth" as it is a load of gritty tales of life in the big city, punctuated with unsavory themes in tracks such as "Snitch" and "Cry Now." Only the faux-reggae of "Jamaican Girl" lets some much needed light in between the blinds.