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Album Review

Eccentric Soul [coll] – [Numero Group]

Hunter Gatherer   10/4/2005   CD, Soul

This is an amazing compilation of soul singles from an obscure label called Capsoul from Columbus, Ohio. Recorded between 1970 and 1974, it’s a miracle that enough 45s were extant to make this compilation after the master tapes were destroyed in a flood and the label founder Bill Moss recycled all the 45s he could find in a fit of pique. Check out the CD insert for the full story.

The music is straight ahead soul music with a lot more heart than technique. For the most part it is excellent, but a few of the tracks sound like the ‘let’s put on a show and save the farm? climax of an after school special. I like the slow tracks the best. I swear I recognize some of these records from growing up in Toledo.

There are seven artists represented on nineteen tracks. Johnson, Hawkins, Tatum & Durr sounds like like a law firm, but check out tracks 1 and 11. Marion Black is great growling away on track 2. Elijah & The Ebonites do a semi-tasteless song called Hot Grits!!! (12), a tribute to Al Green‘s being scalded by an ex who then committed suicide. They redeem themselves with Pure Soul (18) with fake audience noises in fine, hallowed tradition. The aforementioned Bill Moss scolds the player haters with two versions of Sock It To ‘Em Soul Brother (4, 19-instro).

–Hunter Gatherer

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