HOW TO BUY - Solid gold sounds of a soul survivor [10 ESSENTIAL ALBUMS BY BOBBY WOMACK]

MINIT, 1968
Graduating from
guitarist to solo artist,
Womack’s debut is a
genre-busting covers LP. From the killer
version of “California Dreamin’” to a
funkified makeover of “Moonlight In
Vermont”, the R’n’B arrangements,
warm horns and Womack’s gravelly
rasp make for a compelling blend.

Benjamin Booker - Benjamin Booker Review

Rating: 7/10 - Review: Young, New Orleansbased singersongwriter’s feral debut Jack White likes
Benjamin Booker – and Benjamin Booker certainly returns the favour. He’s got the rasping voice (see “Slow Coming”), and the influences spanning Blind Willie Johnson to The Gun Club. He’s also got a respect for the duo format: as illustrated by the swaggering “Have You Seen My Son?” on which his sole accomplice, drummer Max Norton displays a wayward, hurtling sense of rhythm. There’s artifice in Booker’s make-up but the troubled, strutting loner, serving sizzling sides of electrified psyched-swamp blues, is a role he inhabits with conviction and aplomb. A name to watch.

Bahamas - Bahamas Is Afie Review

Rating: 8/10 Review: Former Feist collaborator unveils mellow gold “I’ve got all the time in the world – don’t you want some of that?” asks Afie Jurvanen four songs into his third album. Like his pseudonym, it’s indicative of the Toronto musician’s laidback, warm nature: Bahamas Is Afie drifts effortlessly from such easygoing, blue-eyed soul – also evident on the brassy “Stronger Than That” – to autumnal campfire acoustics, reminiscent of the work of overlooked fellow Canuck Paul Hayden Desser. Blessed by an amiably husky voice, Jurvanen unfurls elegant melodies amid intelligent, economical arrangements, with the delightfully understated strings and flute of “Can’t Take You With Me” a particularly tender highlight.