Tuesday, 5 August 2008

"The Thin Man: The Motown Solo Albums Vol.2" by EDDIE KENDRICKS. A Review Of The 2006 Hip-O Select 3CD Retrospective.




"Volume 1" is part of my "SOUNDS GOOD: Exceptional CD Remasters Soul, Funk & Jazz Fusion" Download Book available to buy on Amazon to either your PC or Mac (it will download the Kindle software to read the book for free to your toolbar). Click on the link below to go my Author's Page for this and other related publications:

                       http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00LQKMC6I

"In the morning when she wakes…touch her face…sunshine keep her safe…"

This 2006 limited edition 3CD set by Universal's HIP-O SELECT mail-order label is the companion volume to the 2CD set "Eddie Kendricks - Keep On Truckin': The Motown Solo Albums, Vol.1" also issued in late 2006 (see separate review).

Here's the breakdown:

Disc 1 (79:40 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 10 make up his 5th US album "Boogie Down!" issued February 1974 on Tamla T-330V1
Tracks 11 to 18 are his 6th US album "The Hit Man" issued June 1975 on Tamla T6-338S1

Disc 2 (79:04 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 10 make up his 7th US album "He's A Friend" issued January 1976 on Tamla T6-343S1
Tracks 11 to 20 are his 8th album "Goin' Up In Smoke" issued September 1976 on Tamla T6-346S1

Disc 3 (73:53 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 9 are his 9th and last album for the label, "Slick", issued August 1977 on Tamla T6-356S1
Tracks 10 to 17 are all PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED bonus tracks called "Motown Lost & Found" with the bulk of them (10 to 16) being outtakes from the 1972 "People...Hold On" album sessions

PACKAGING:
All 3 CDs are Brown & Yellow with the Tamla World logo - aping the way the US LP labels would have looked, The 32-page booklet pictures both the LP sleeves front and rear in full colour, gives detailed notes on the song-writer and session players involved, lists US singles and their B-sides that came off each album (details from the actual Motown session logs) and there's a continued essay on Hendricks' career by noted Motown writer BRIAN CHIN. In between the exact reproduction of album sleeves are high-quality colour pictures of Kendricks from the early Seventies - in fact the booklet like the silver digipak that houses the whole thing - has an overall classy feel about it. But the best bit - as always with HIP-O SELECT - is the wonderful SOUND...

SOUND:
As per the 1st volume, all tracks have been digitally remastered with great care and affection by one of Universal's top tape engineers SUHA GUR - a name that has turned up on countless superb Motown compilations to date - especially the excellent 2CD "Gold" series. Starting in 1974, this set's material begins with soulful funkiness and ends up with slightly cheesy disco. The sound on "Tell Her Love Has Felt The Need" is typical of so many tracks - a funky backbeat, falsetto vocals, Bacharach-type brass fills - all of it sounding CLEAR, WARM and WELL BALANCED. What a fantastic listen and very reminiscent of Marvin circa "Let's Get It On". The music and lyrics do dip a bit by the time we reach the disco sets, but then the whole package redeems itself with the excellence of the unreleased material on Disc 3 from the 1972 "People...Hold On" album sessions. "I Need You More Now Than Ever" is as lovely a soul song as ever graced the charts of the time - astonishing that its languished in Motown's vaults until now.

To sum-up, I can only add to the excellent and informative reviews that went before this - this is a great Motown set.

A job well done by HIP-O SELECT - and one that will have you referring back to Volume 1...

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