Wednesday, 8 July 2015

"Dore L.A. Soul Sides 2" by VARIOUS ARTISTS (June 2015 Ace/Kent Soul CD Remasters) - A Review by Mark Barry...

"...Gettin' Back Into Circulation..."

The first volume in this series "Dore L.A. Soul Sides" issued in April 2014 – caused a bit of a stir amongst lovers of Sixties Soul (Ace/Kent Soul CDKEND 417). With a tasty stew of 24 more cut from the same Soul cloth (2 Previously Unreleased) – Volume 2 is likely to elicit just as much affection and excitement (even if the audio is not as sharp as one would have hoped for). Here are the elusive West Coast details...

UK released June 2015 (July 2015 in the USA) – "Dore L.A. Soul Sides 2" on Ace/Kent Soul CDKEND 433 (Barcode 029667243322) is a 24-track CD compilation and fleshes out as follows (65:03 minutes):

1. Getting’ Back Into Circulation – THE ENTERTAINERS IV (2015 Previously Unreleased Remix of a 1965 USA 7” single on Dore 759, A)
2. I’m Givin’ You Notice Baby – THE FIDELS (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 761, A)
3. What Did You Gain By That? – KENARD (1970 USA 7” single on Dore 848, A)
4. Wind In My Sails – THE SUPERBS (1972 USA 7” single on Dore 872, A)
5. Funny With my Stuff – THE NATURAL RESOURCES UNPOLLUTED (1971 USA 7” single on Dore 854, A)
6. Pictures In My Window – EDDIE WILLIAMS (1970 USA 7” single on Dore 839, A)
7. That’s What Love Will Do – MILTON JAMES (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 767, A)
8. I Wanna Chance – THE VOWS (1962 USA 7” single on Markay 103, A)
9. I Want You – DEE TORRES (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 762, A)
10. My Pillow – THE DARLINGS (1963 USA 7” single on Dore 677, A)
11. We Together Baby – SMOKY & THE BEARS (1967 USA 7” single on Dore 790, A)
12. Keep On Movin’ – LITTLE JOHNNY HAMILTON & THE CREATORS (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 760, A)
13. The Girl That I Loved – BOBBY & EDDIE UNLIMITED (1968 USA 7” single on Dore 809, A)
14. Nitty Gritty City – THE SWANS (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 777, A)
15. I Only Cry Once A Day Now – THE PUFFS (1966 USA 7” single on Dore 757, A)
16. Goddess Of Love – THE SUPERBS (1965 USA 7” single on Dore 739, A)
17. Nothing Lasts Forever – THE NATURAL RESOURCES (1969 USA 7” single on Dore 1003, A)
18. Just Ain’t My Day – THE ENTERTAINERS IV (1968 USA 7” single on Dore 802, A)
19. Stuffin’ The Bird – RAMLING WLLIE & THE EUOPHONICS (1976 USA 7” single on Dore 918, A)
20. Just A Little Ugly – GAIL ANDERSON (1981 USA 7” single on Dore 973, A)
21. This Girl Is A Good Girl – JOHNNY BRAFF (1975 USA 7” single on 904, A)
22. Saigon To San Francisco – TOUSSAINT McCALL (2015 Previously Unreleased Dore Recording)
23. As I Sit Here – THE WHISPERS (1965 USA 7” single on Dore 740, A)
24. I Look In The Mirror – EDDIE KOOL (1968 USA 7” single on Dore 807, A)
Tracks 1 and 22 are Previously Unreleased – all tracks are MONO except 1, 19, 20 and 22 – which are STEREO

The 16-page booklet by long-standing Northern Soul expert and lover ADY CROASDELL and gives a track-by-track history of what’s what and who slept with who...while NICK ROBBINS has done the remasters. There are label repros of rare American 45s for Dore, Nu-Sound, Mackay, Dee Dee Sounds  and Burn Records as well as publicity shots of Little Johnny Hamilton and The Superbs as well as a Trade Advert for The Whispers from April 1968. Tasteful and informative...

It opens with a devastating one-two - both of which are likely to send Northern Soul aficionados (and dancers in general) into something of a lather – an alternate mix of “Gettin’ Back Into Circulation” by The Entertainers IV and the Motown brass-belter “I’m Givin’ You Notice Baby” by The Fidels. I can’t imagine what they cost as 45s but I’m thinking there wouldn’t be much change from a month’s salary (each). We then enter the realm of the genuinely strange – a Soul song that sounds more like some bizarre socially conscious message tune sung by Kenard (lead singer with The Entertainers). Many thought it was never released – it’s rougher than the preceding tracks but is included for its £1000+ rarity value. The Superbs have had their Kent-Soul “Best Of” CD compilation (CDKEND 417) and their “What Did You Gain By That” is another talcum-powder shuffle.

The pace ups with the 1971 “Funky With My Stuff” which is very Shaft influenced (and in a good way). Flicking back to 1966 “Pictures In My Window” by Eddie Williams feels epic too but suffers from what seems to have an ever so slight pitch wobble. The Milton James cut is worse sounding like it was mastered from a stretched tape. Things pick audio-wise with the very Smokey Robinson vocal group feel to “I Wanna Chance” – a lovely mixture of Girl-Group and Soul. That same feel continues with “I Want You” by Dee Torres where the guitar almost feels like Hank Marvin of The Shadows doing Soul with another vocalist at the mike.  Identikit to “Louie Louie” – “We Together Baby” by Smoky & The Bears is a great dancing instrumental that packs a mean punch. Although it’s good – “Keep On Movin’” again sounds ever so slightly bootleg – but I can hear why its been included (very Mayfield). Another winner is “Nitty Gritty City” by The Swans as is the truly funky instrumental “Stuffin’ The Bird”. Traditional Vocal Groups warmth wafts over you as The Whispers do “As I Sit Here” – quite possibly the loveliest track on here.

It’s not all genius for sure and unfortunately the Audio really dips on quite a few tracks – but the feel of a 'discovery' hangs over so many of the more Soulful sides. Kent-Soul buyers will love it...

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Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

Spines of Exceptional CD Remasters

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