Review : Various artists - Tru Thoughts Covers
ThephoenixBrighton-based label Tru Thoughts emerged at the dawn of the millennium with hit down-tempo/IDM acts like Bonobo. The label soon gained renown as the home of Quantic and his particular blend of Latin-inflected neo-soul topped by a solid stable of UK singers conceived, born, and raised to the strains of the peculiar British fascination for the '60s sounds of black America. Although it fell to interloper Mark Ronson (and his protégée Amy Winehouse) to ride that concept all the way to the bank, Quantic and his Tru Thought mates did it slightly earlier and much tighter.
This compilation of surprising covers (going back to 2002) can be seen as a big middle finger in the direction of Lindsay Lohan's erstwhile sort-of-brother-in-law. If you like the Ronson stuff, you'll like this so much better....full text
BbcSome suggest there is no skill in copying another artist’s work, while those in favour claim reinventing a song with originality is worthwhile.
To err on the side of those in favour, it could be argued that Jimi Hendrix’s All Along The Watchtower, Jeff Buckley’s Lilac Wine and Ronson-and-Winehouse’s Valerie are all superior to the original recordings. Now Brighton independent Tru Thoughts, via their Unfold imprint, have collected 17 songs re-imagined by acts on their roster and thrown them together in one place.
Perhaps the best work here is Hot 8 Brass Band’s fantastic cover of Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing. In the capable hands of these New Orleans musicians Gaye’s seduction classic is reworked in celebratory, arms-aloft fashion.
The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army has been covered by more than 40 acts so credit is due to Nostalgia 77 (aka producer Benedict Lamdin) for his surprising take from 2005. It’s far more understated and slower than, say, the Joss Stone version; features spiky, jazzy guitar, and a soulful Alice Russell vocal; and, controversially, almost removes the original’s guitar-as-bass riff.
Quantic & His Combo Bárbaro brazenly take on Portishead’s Wandering Star and replace dubby moodiness with jovial salsa. Elsewhere Will Holland (aka Quantic) grabs his Soul Orchestra to rework 4 Hero’s Hold it Down in the vein of Stevie Wonder’s I Wish, and produces a decent Hammond love-in when attempting Mr Scruff’s Get a Move On....full text
ClashmusicBrighton’s Tru Thoughts record label has been at the cutting edge of downtempo, funk and jazz for 10 years and this CD sees them hang out the bunting and crack open the celebratory champagne in style.
On ‘Covers’, the Tru Thoughts family take a plethora of well-known tracks by artists like Frank Sinatra, Portishead and Jeff Buckley and give them an exquisitely funky make-over. Many of the tunes are already out there on individual albums, but as a sampler this is hard to beat. And if there is anyone on this planet who does not have the Hot 8 Brass Band’s superlative version of ‘Sexual Healing’ in their collection, then this is their chance to correct that anomaly....full text
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