STYLE: Jazz RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 298-24869 LABEL: Reprise 2467952 FORMAT: CD Album RRP: £2.50
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
The masters return. From my perspective, the American CCM industry has treated the breathtaking art of acapella harmonising in the same way that it's currently treating Celtic music, a faddish word to be turned into maximum units sold by flooding the marketplace with dozens of products - of mixed quality - until the public tires of acapella and moves on to the next "big thing". But in the same way that an lona or a Sammy Horner is, to the discerning fan, always going to appear head and shoulders above those conveyor belt Celts of commercial exploitation, so a Take 6 or a Ladysmith Black Mambazo are clearly in a different class to the acapella also-rans of Nashville. In fact, South Africa's Ladysmiths make a guest appearance on "Fly Away" here. Standouts for me are "So Cool" with the jazz harmonies almost recalling the Swingle Singers (go a.- your grandad who they were) while "Nothin' But Love" has a sinuous, soulful groove with plenty of vocal percussion. When real instruments do appear, like on "You'll Be Waiting For Me" they're so minimalist one wonders why they bothered. Throughout the album utterly glorious harmonies ebb and flow. A couple of years back Cross Rhythms ran what proved to be a completely erroneous news story (based on a "scoop" from someone at US Warner Brothers) announcing Take 6 had disbanded. Instead the group got themselves back together, and after some concerted prayer, have come back with new spiritual focus and a new determination to demonstrate that there may be hundreds of acapella albums but the release of a Take 6 set is still something special.
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