Friday, 10 March 2017

"Love For What It Is" by ANITA POINTER (2014 Big Break Records 'Expanded Edition' CD Remaster) - A Review by Mark Barry...

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"…Temporarily Blue…"

The lead singer with one of the most successful Female Vocal Groups in R&B and Soul throughout the Seventies and Eighties (with multiple Grammy award wins on their walls) practically guaranteed ANITA POINTER a shot at Solo stardom – and yet in late 1987 her “Love For What It Is” album barely scraped up to 48 on the US Cash Box R&B charts - while its two singles did even less business. And yet those champions of Soul, Funk and Disco CD reissues Big Break Records of the UK (BBR) seem to think it’s a forgotten piece of Soul class – and on occasion – they’re probably right. Here are the big hair do details…

UK released October 2014 – "Love For What It Is" by ANITA POINTER on Big Break Records CDBBRX 0309 (Barcode 5013929060937) is an 'Expanded Edition' CD Remaster and breaks down as follows (77:49 minutes):

1. Overnight Success
2. Love Me Like You Do
3. The Pledge [duet with Philip Bailey]
4. You Don’t Scare Me
5. More Than A Memory
6. Have A Little Faith In Love
7. Love For What It Is
8. Beware Of What You Want
9. Temporarily Blue
Tracks 1 to 9 are the album “Love For What It Is” – released October 1987 in the USA on RCA Records 6419-1-R and RCA Records PD86419 in the UK and Europe

10. Overnight Success (12” Dance Mix)
11. More Than A Memory (12” East Coast Mix)
12. Overnight Success (Single Mix)
13. More Than A Memory (12” West Coast Mix)
14. Overnight Success (Instrumental)
15. More Than A Memory (Instrumental)

You get one of those curve-corner jewel cases, a see-through tray that advertises BBR’s other Pointer Sister CD reissues beneath it, a 12-page inlay with excellent liner notes by Christian John Wikane (with memories from Anita) and best of all – a NICK ROBBINS and WAYNE A. DICKSON remaster that elevates everything to amazing clarity.

I wish I could say that the album is a forgotten masterpiece – it isn’t. But as ever – there’s those great moments and songs that warrant a re-listen. Stuff like “You Don’t Scare Me” and “Have A Little Faith In Me” are afflicted with that awful Eighties Drum sound and cluttering brass jabs that keep the tunes busy but lack anything like a soul. Better is the obvious singles “Overnight Success” and “More Than A Memory” – the sort of tunes George Benson would polish of on “20/20”. And the ballad “Temporarily Blue” and “Love Me Like You Do” are the kind of songs you’d hear at the end of a movie as the credit roles on some tropical island where the couple are walking off into the sunset. Actually more interesting from a collector’s point of view is the “Instrumental” mixes of “Overnight Success” and “More Than A Memory” – some cool funk moments.

It’s not genius by any stretch of the imagination – but if you’re a fan – the presentation and the superb audio quality are going to be the biog draws…

PS: Big Break Records (BBR) CD Remasters I’ve reviewed:
1. Send It – ASHFORD & SIMPSON (1977)
2. Is It Still Good To Ya – ASHFORD and SIMPSON (1978)
3. Stay Free – ASHFORD and SIMPSON (1979)
4. Central Heating – HEATWAVE (1977)
5. Hot Property - HEATWAVE (1979)
6. Candles - HEATWAVE (1980)
7. Turnin' On - HIGH INERGY (1977)
8. Harvest For The World - THE ISLEY BROTHERS (1976)
9. Go For Your Guns - THE ISLEY BROTHERS (1977)
10. In The Heart – KOOL & THE GANG (1983)
11. I Hope We Get To Love On Time - MARILYN McCOO & BILLY DAVIS (1976)
12. I Miss You [known as "Harold Melvin The Blue Notes" in the UK] - HAROLD MELVIN and THE BLUE NOTES (1972)
13. Black & Blue - HAROLD MELVIN & THE BLUE NOTES (1973)
14. Love Is The Message - MFSB (1973)
15. Universal Love – MFSB (1975)
16. All The Faces Of... - BUDDY MILES (1974)
17. For The First Time – STEPHANIE MILLS (1975)
18. I Can See Clearly Now - JOHNNY NASH (1972)
19. In Philadelphia - O'JAYS (1969)
20. Back Stabbers - O'JAYS (1972)
21. Ship Ahoy - O'JAYS (1973)
22. Down To Love Town – THE ORIGINALS (1977)
23. Ebony Woman - BILLY PAUL (1970 and 1973)
24. 360 Degrees Of Billy Paul - BILLY PAUL (1972)
25. War Of The Gods - BILLY PAUL (1973)
26. Platinum Hook – PLATINUM HOOK (1978)
27. Love For What It Is - ANITA POINTER (of The Pointer Sisters) (1987)
28. Live: Stompin’ At The Savoy – RUFUS and CHAKA KHAN (1983)
29. Summernights – SILVER CONVENTION (1977)
30. Smoked Sugar - SMOKED SUGAR (1975)
31. Spinners – SPINNERS (1973)
32. Soul Master – EDWIN STARR (1968)
33. Involved - EDWIN STARR (1971)
34. Switch - SWITCH (1978)
35. Watercolors – THE WATERS (1980)
36. Just As I Am - BILL WITHERS (1971)
37. Heartbeats – YARBROUGH & PEOPLES (1983)

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