Tuesday, October 16, 2012

#87: Solomon Burke - Rock 'N Soul (1964)

Ray Charles called himself a genius because he's a bad ass and because he is. Solomon Burke is the self proclaimed King of Rock N' Soul. Which... even if this was an actual genre - he wouldn't be the King. If that were the case then I'd like to be officially known as the King of SoundsNowhereNearAsGoodAsTheBeatles, and at least I'd be truthful.

Won't You Give Him (One More Chance)
This is the first song on the album that has a more modern feel to it. The vocals are quite good, but the instrumentation that goes along with it makes it feel like it could be revamped and made today. There's so much pull back to the chorus it's ridiculous, and the vocals only amplify this - it's why the song works.

Can't Nobody Love You
The previous tracks are early rock n' roll with blues vocals, but this song features a little more blues in the instrumentation. However, at times it feels as if he's forcing the blend of genres. Like he's trying to find the mathematical equations of each genre and then working it out so they technically work together. At times, it works but at times it falls flat. This song could have carried a lot more weight if it was just the blues and he wasn't trying to fit other parts into it.

You're Good for Me
It's got a 3/4 feel to it with this simple bass line to push it along, while the vocals sing some soulful words about a relationship. It's like 'Bring it On Home to Me' but not quite as good. This album is full of songs that sound like other songs that you've heard before. Despite the album's title indicating that we're going to hear a new genre, it doesn't feel like anything new. If James Brown and Sam Cooke not been on the scene as of yet, I think this would have a little more merit to me.

All in all, it's not a bad album. My issue is that it just feels to forced. It takes a bass part from one genre, a drum part from another, a vocal from another, and all together it just doesn't feel genuine. It sounds "technically" fine, but this album isn't any more special than any other album that came out in this year. There's no real big take away's, it's just kinda blah.

Tomorrow's album: Ben Folds Five's The Sound and the Life of the Mind.

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