Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Paul London-Don't Walk Away (1994)


Love it when my casual music explorations lead to a dazzling discovery; love it even more when someone surprises me with that dazzling discovery! A recent trip around the Europop circuit had allowed me to get acquainted with a Paul London—then an unknown entity inside my musical world, but an artist whom I believed would yield promising results. Soon thereafter, Paul's debut solo album, "Don't Walk Away", would be graciously gifted to me.....and it turns out it was quite the gracious gift indeed. With my receiving of that gift came a number of things worthy of the 'Music Surprise Of The Day' award. For starters, my curiosity about Paul's background, which lead me to find out he was the other half of a band he fronted with his brother Sam called BROTHER 2 BROTHER, who released one album together called "Freedom" (and I already have my sights set on grabbing hold of that one). BROTHER 2 BROTHER, coincidentally, happens to share the same same as another sibling duo who released one album entitled "So Many Roads" (they've been previously featured right here at "The Music Spectrum": http://music-spectrum.blogspot.com/2014/10/brother-2-brother-so-many-roads-1996.html). So while I look forward to the day when I have made my claim to "Freedom", I enjoyed some music freedom of my own, immersing myself in the goodness of Mr. London's refreshing vocals and his superb backing Europop production. Was all smiles right at the very start while taking in the opener, "Dance With Me". It's just the kind of easy-listening Europop that I crave, highlighted by the excellent keyboard work and by the alluring main chorus where he busts out with the 'dance with me, groove with me, rock with me, move with me in ecstasy' and the more pointed declaration of 'funk it!' at the end of every movement. Pouring that exact amount of sunshine into me was "Never Gonna Fall In Love", keeping it positive with the note to his sweetheart that he'll never find another one just like her, never will find another love like her, and "Love Can Make A Difference", which maintains that positivity and optimism. In fact, I could only find one place on this album where there's even the slightest negative vibe: "That's All I Want From You". Beyond the lively upbeat groove—and the touch of jazziness that made it all the more pleasurable to my ears—there's Paul's expectations of wanting the love he shares with the lady in his life to grow, but a cloud of doubts is hovering over that love. Well there's no doubt he expects some give and take on "Give A Lot Of Love". an instant favorite of mine with its reggae-inspired hip, the dreamy melody and just the classy, throwback feel of this groove altogether.....highlighted with a kick of jazz, of course. Very well could be a real cover of a golden oldie, but it's wonderfully produced and even more wonderfully performed either way. Speaking of covers and such, that would be the other segment of my latest 'Music Surprise Of The Day', because he thrills in every way with his dancey Euro-house remake of the classic hit, "Everlasting Love". I have completely lost count of all of the different versions of the 60's original I've heard in my lifetime! I love just about each and every one of them, and I may as well add this Paul London remake to the ever-growing list! Had assumed it was a cover,, too, but a second Paul London Euro-house thrill entitled "I Wanna Be Your Lover" is not a remake of the classic hit by the late Prince. Yet hearing him singing about wanting to be the lady's lover every minute of every day pretty much offers up the same romantic idea anyways. Then besides that mega dance jam, there's the breezy feel-gooder of a title track, which totally captures the house music style of the 90's with him busting out with the rap on the verses before the main chorus sweeps in, and my #1 favorite, "It's Alright", which I had already slated for placement onto my 'Energy Mix' the instant I was captivated and charmed by the song's tonality, the contrasting vocals of the guest female singer performing alongside him in main chorus and the lively rhythm. While the love he's got for her has got his whole body reeling, it's the music here that had my own body reeling with nothing but good feelings! You won't wanna walk away from this album, because I know you're gonna dig every second of it:

1. Dance With Me
2. I Wanna Be Your Lover
3. Never Gonna Fall In Love
4. That's All I Want From You
5. Don't Walk Away
6. It's Alright
7. Everlasting Love
8. Give A Lot Of Love
9. Love Can Make A Difference

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