NOW PLAYING: 'BLACK ACID SOUL' BY LADY BLACKBIRD...
I know some people think there are too many ‘Now Playing’ posts on this page but I enjoy them, especially as every now and then an album like this will get recommended. Until someone posted it here I’d never heard of this album or the artist, I’m so glad that person took the time to mention it.
After the recommendation was seconded and thirded (is that a thing) I decided to fire up Spotify and have a little listen to ‘Black Acid Soul’. It took me less than two complete songs to realise I needed this LP in my life.
From the first few lines of ‘Blackbird’, I was taken in by Marley Munroe’s voice. It takes some stones to cover Nina Simone but not only does Munroe cover she, dare I say it, equals the original in my humble opinion.
The album is a mix of original songs and covers of classics that have been reworked to fit the stripped-back feel of the album. As well as ‘Blackbird’, Munroe covers ‘It's Not That Easy’ by Ruben Bell, ‘Lost And Looking’ by Sam Cook, ‘Beware The Stranger’ by The Voices of East Harlem, ‘Ruler Of My Heart’ by Allen Toussaint and ‘Collage’ by 60s rock band James Gang amongst others.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t know some of those tracks were covers, ‘I Am What I Am’ though, I knew was originally a Gloria Gaynor track. I didn’t realise that it was the Lady Blackbird version being used on the Virgin Atlantic adverts until I did some digging though.
For most of the album the raw, vulnerable vocals are the main attraction with support coming from stripped-back, minimalist jazz and soul tracks. Buy the deluxe edition like I did and you are treated to ten extra tracks including some that properly funk out.
Tracks like ‘Woman’, ‘Feel It Coming’ and ‘Baby I Just Don’t’ live up to the acid soul part of the album's title with Munroe cutting loose and going all Anastasia on us - pounding beats and powerful delivery. The deluxe edition also includes a number of remixes of the reworked songs which makes them feel more contemporary.
Tracks To Try (Standard Edition): ‘Blackbird’, It’s Not That Easy’, ‘Ruler Of My Heart’, ‘Collage’, ‘It’ll Never Happen Again’, ‘Beware The Stranger’.
Tracks To Try (Deluxe Edition): ‘I Am What I Am’, ‘Woman’, ‘I Feel It Coming', ‘Baby I Just Don’t’, ‘Blackbird (Emma-Jean Thackeray Remix)’, ‘Lost And Looking (Colleen ‘Cosmo’ Murphy Cosmodica Remix)’, ‘Collage (Bruise Remix)