Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Frankie Knuckles Featuring Adeva-Welcome To The Real World (1995)


My second music joyride of the day sees me making a very much welcomed second visit with the delightful house diva who calls herself Adeva; plus, it marks my reacquainting with the renowned late dance DJ and remixing extraordinaire Frankie Knuckles. Together, this dynamic singer/producer duo puts forth a dynamite effort that's twelve tracks deep and waiting for house music loves to dive into! After the epic instrumentals of the "Fanfare" announce the diva's arrival, then the suspense and groovy rhythm of the title crack shortly thereafter, you're officially brought into her world officially brings you into her world when the soulful backup singers state loud, bold and clear that there's too many fish in the sea for her to be worried about a single no-good man on the good time of a mid-tempo jam that is this album's third track. 'Saturday, you went out with Mary Jane'—just one of my favorite lines in a song that's filled with a bunch of similar lines showing just how no-good that man has been to her. The mood is more positive when it's back to the house party on "Love Can Change It" and "Keep It Real" (so electrifying and powerful this diva is with her super-soulful, gritty vocals, especially the way she roars and soars in the song's closing movements), then the heart-charmer of a cuddly slow piece that is "You're Number One (In My Book)" (doesn't the airy, ambient melody here glide along so nicely with that delicate piano?). You can almost taste the bitter and the sweet that are in perfect ironic harmony on "Passion & Pain", another fantastic jam with a big-time bounce to the beat. The love might hurt, but it sure feels good listening to the music on this one! Don't miss out on any of the house party that is " What Am I Missin'? "; ditto for the instant catch that is the follow-up, "Whadda U Want (From Me)?", where the breezy, ambient melody beneath the deep rhythm and the great hook of 'whadda u want, whadda u want, whadda u want from me?' voiced in main chorus, plus the ladies on backup chanting 'what do you want?' during the beat drop midway will keep you more than satisfied! The diva wants even more questions answered when the beats slow down again for my latest pick for 'Slow Jam Of The Night': "Tell Me Why". Now I have a question of my own: was it Frankie Knuckles himself delivering the sentimental spoken words partway through? One thing's for sure—you gotta play this gem twice, because it ends so quickly.....at least by my estimation. Could've gone on for another minute or two and let the soft music coast on and on on. Then out of nowhere, Adeva—and a selection of church singers—bust out with the gospel house jam, " Walkin' ", where she proclaims her close relationship with Our Creator. Gospel music and house music—a combination that I don't get to hear very much (whether in the traditional church music genre or in the contemporary Christian music genre altogether), but it's a marvelous adventure when I do get to enjoy the meshing of the two. My second visit with this diva ends with a warming and respectful tribute to the late Larry Levan, a fellow DJ and producer and close friend of the recently-departed Frankie Knuckles. Didn't figure that out until I heard Larry's name being spoken, and then I realized that it was Frankie himself delivering the thoughtful words. After the speech (and the epic orchestral overtures that play in the background), a brief acapella snippet of the preceding dance cut " Walkin' " is performed again, which makes me wonder if that song had been dedicated to Larry all along.....as if to say that he's walking up in the heavens, the same place that Frankie has gone up to rest.....

1. Fanfare
2. Welcome To The Real World
3. Too Many Fish
4. Love Can Change It
5. Keep It Real
6. You're Number One (In My Book)
7. Passion & Pain
8. What Am I Missin'?
9. Whadda U Want (From Me)?
10. Tell Me Why
11. Walkin'
12. Tribute (Reprise)

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