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Martin, Flav & Marotta, Jerry: Soul Redemption

An album from David Crosby, Al Stewart, Suzanne Vega and Tommy Emmanuel guitarist Flav Martin, and Paul McCartney, Hall & Oates, The Indigo Girls, Marc Chon and Peter Gabriel drummer Jerry Marotta, Soul Redemption is, as they say themselves, a blend of modern adult-rock and traditional world-pop. Before going on to suggest that the music created here would be just as at home in an Italian cafe as it would be on the polo fields of Indio. To be fair, I’m not really up to speed with what you can kick back and relax to with your cappuccino, or indeed what sounds roll along as the chukkas come and go. However, if it’s soft rocking Americana with a Latin twist that gets these folks a jivin’, then this is where it’s at.

Beautifully relaxed and perfectly poised, this is an unselfconscious set where authentic sounds simply roll free. Martin wrote all but two of the pieces on show and it has to be said that he’s done a mighty fine job. Marotta, joined by his rhythm-mate in Peter Gabriel’s band throughout, bassist Tony Levin, does a magnificent job of adding the most relaxed urgency to the pop tinged title track. The piece revealing a voice from Martin that reminds of Ray Wilson and a gentle vibe that evokes Gerry Rafferty and Del Amitri all in one. It’s an enticing introduction and one ably continued through the relaxed Americana strum of “Please” and cheek to cheek dance of “I Knew It Was You”.

Slowly but surely little hooks and chorus lines burrow deep and as the Euro-jazz of “Drinking You” soothes and slides, and “How Can You Leave Me Now” tells its heartbroken story, so you become more and more embroiled in this album’s way of thinking. The two pieces not provided by Martin fare equally well, with the accordion of Gary Schreiner adding gentle atmospheres to Martin’s part Italian-part English vocals on the Allan Clarke, Tony Hicks and Graham Nash written “Tell Me To My Face”. While “Cosa Hai Messo Nel Caffe” by Giancarlo Bigami, Riccardo Del Turco and Giorgio Antola also fits into this album’s style seamlessly.

Perfect for a lazy, sunny afternoon, Soul Redemption really is a classy, reserved affair that proves deceptively beguiling and invigorating. It may never get out of third gear, but sometimes it’s the journeys that make you slow down, relax and soak in the view that prove the most rewarding.

Track Listing
1. Soul Redemption
2. Please
3. Drinking You
4. I Knew It Was You
5. Tell It To My Face
6. Rio De Janeiro
7. Wild Moon
8. Coffee Song (Cosa Hai Messo Nel Caffè)
9. How Could You Leave Me Now

Added: July 31st 2018
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Flav Martin & Jerry Marotta on bandcamp
Hits: 591
Language: english

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