STYLE: R&B RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 167092-25964 LABEL: Plankton PCDN173 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RRP: £8.99
Reviewed by Andrew Wallace
Following on from their successful debut release Essex-based nine-piece band ECHO return with 'Soul Proprietor'. Sticking to a formula of taking popular Motown and soul songs made famous by such icons as Marvin Gaye, Jackie Wilson and Curtis Mayfield and tweaking them lyrically to give them more of a Christian slant, this set pervades a warm charm. Richard Cottle helms production and is ably assisted by Andrew Linham who oversees the outstanding brass arrangements while the vocals, though obviously not up to the same levels as the mainstream originals, all exude soulful assurance. The opener "This Will Be" with its jazzy sax intro and blaring horns is a sassy slice of funk, its summery, sunny vibe setting the tone straight-off. Curtis Mayfield's "People Get Ready" is somewhat over-recorded but lead singer Maria Da Silva manages to stop deja-vu creeping in. "I Got The Blues" with its tasty guitar intro mixes things up a bit and if one can shake off the feeling that one is listening to highly competent karaoke the growing number of festival-goers who've caught ECHO in action might well want to purchase 'Soul Proprietor'.
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