Sunday, March 27, 2016

SAINT & CAMPBELL-Time On The Move (1995)


Time to move to something different! Of all the music genres that I enjoy listening to, reggae is often among those riding in the back seat in favor of everything else my ears have received more exposure to throughout the years. At least for this Easter Sunday afternoon, reggae gets the privilege of controlling my music destiny from the driver's seat. The British duo of Don Campbell and General Saint had me on cruise control all throughout their joint effort that is 1995's "Time On The Move"—one of them being the reggae lead vocalist the while the other soulful singer performing the main lyrics. They're a perfect combination, and I noted just how perfect they are together the moment that I met the opening title track with pure delight. The jazzy accompaniment and the smooth backup vocals matching the melody note for note sure had a lot to do with that. Had started to jump down to the companion 'Soul Version' found at the very end of the album right afterwards, but ended up waiting and maintained proper course. Oh what a joy it was listening to "Oh Carol!". Besides the sunny air about it, I noted the distinctive retro pop feel to it, almost reminding me of Ben E. King's "Stand By Me", though with more of a dancey rhythm. Then I was reminded of something else on "I Love You": UB40's "Red Red Wine". It had to be that reggae part of the lyrics that goes 'make me feel complete-tah', which brings to mind the line that goes 'make me feel so fine-nuh' from "Red Red Wine". Memory served me well on the duo's marvelous reggae remake of "Save The Last Dance". This timeless DRIFTERS classic is always a beauty no matter who's singing it, but the selected melody and the smooth soulful vocals singing the familiar words of ' don't give your heart to anyone ' make it especially beautiful. "No Money No Love": I had already liked this one just from the title and knew it would tell a fun story. The theme is simple: if he ain't got no money, then he gets no love from the woman who wants it all. He's got to have money like sand and take her for trips around the world.—a pretty tall order, but there's gotta be money in the bank. The story, in fact, is almost like a present-day interpretation of the message preached by the late Gwen Guthre on her 80's hit, "Ain't Nothin' Goin' On But The Rent", where she has no desire to be with a man who is broke and his pockets are empty One of the more entertaining highlights of my reggae joyride was the festive uptempo jam, "Body Talk". The music here actually isn't very reggae at all, but instead features an exotic drum rhythm and deep bass line, accented by the funky spurts of the accompanying horn, that do everything to get your body movin'. "A Little Bit Of Magic (The Midas Touch)", which features some lovely ladies on backup vocals, makes me feel like getting into the dance groove, too. But as much as I enjoyed bouncing along to the reggae beats, there were a couple of times where the songwriting grabbed my attention: "Suspicious Minds", which is about a couple in love but not continuing to share that love if one believes the other isn't being true and faithful, and "Praise Without Raise", which is about the man providing all of the things to keep the family together, but the woman not doing her equal share. And on that note, I'll say that I hope that my own words of praise have raised your interest in SAINT & CAMPBELL, and that you have been moved to choose "Time On The Move" as your next music pleasure:

1. Time On The Move
2. Oh Carol! [Carbonara Mix]
3. Stop That Train (My Girl Is Gone)
4. I Love You
5. A Little Bit Of Magic (The Midas Touch)
6. Save The Last Dance
7. Over & Over
8. No Money No Love
9. Suspicious Minds
10. Body Talk
11. Praise Without Raise
12. Time On The Move [Soul Version]

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