Favorite

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings: I Learned the Hard Way (Daptone) 

Something a little different is definitely happening on album No. 4 by Daptone Records flagship act Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings. More overtly pop-soul than the songs on previous records, the 12 tracks here tilt more toward the light touch of Motown soul and the orchestral feel of classic Philadelphia soul than the largely Memphis-laced grooves of before. The changes are subtle but significant.

The opening track, "The Game Gets Old," sets the tone with a big production, including strings, lots of horns and much more prominent backup vocals than on previous records. Ditto "I Learned the Hard Way," "Better Things," "Window Shopping" and others, all songs with strings and backup vocals augmented by production touches like timpani, glockenspiel and vibraphone.

Is the new approach a good thing? The over-all sound of the record is big on top but sounds somewhat thin in the middle and bottom, especially with the drums.

However, we'll give them the benefit of the doubt. Sharon Jones, Bosco Mann and the rest of the Daptone Records crew have probably done more to bring '60s-influenced soul, funk and R&B into the 21st century than anyone else. Time will tell where this fits into the Sharon Jones canon, but for now, it's another high-quality release from one of modern music's most thrilling and relevant acts.

More by Carl Hanni

  • Paper Weight

    The mind-bending depth and dimensions of Nick Georgiou's sculptures
    • Jun 8, 2017
  • Machine for Thinking

    Warhol’s trailblazing epic film makes a rare appearance
    • Apr 27, 2017
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Latest in Rhythm & Views

  • Rhythm & Views

    American Monoxide “In Flight Mode” (People In A Position To Know)
    • Dec 18, 2014
  • Rhythm & Views

    Wight Lhite “Beyond the Satellites” (Paisley Shirt Records)
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Vintage Vinyl

    Quinstrels "I've Got a Girl"/"Tell Her" Moxie Records M.R.C.—1965
    • Jul 13, 2017
  • Vintage Vinyl

    The Frozen Sun “Electric Soul”/”Electric Soul” (long version) Captain Zoomar Records, 1969
    • Jun 29, 2017
  • More »

Facebook Activity

© 2017 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation