Nighttime lovers 10

A review by Patrik Andersson

Dutch soul funk connoisseurs Vinyl Masterpiece (VM) will always have a special place in my heart. I was there from the start in 2004 when I was asked to write the liner notes of their very first release, the rare album “I Need You” by Network. I’m both honoured and proud of that! Many great albums and compilations have been released ever since and one of the finest and earliest series of compilations is “Nighttime Lovers”. On the 16th of February 2009 the 10th CD in the series was out, and of course, I couldn’t refuse to review such an intriguing CD.

What is so special about this release is the fact that VM have included an extra CD with a top-notch megamix by Frankie Rodriquez! But let’s start with CD 1.

When listening through the CD the first time I noticed that it has both ups and downs. Angela Bofil’s electrofunkish “Can’t Slow Down” is not her best track (think “This Is A Dream” instead). Jimmy William’s bouncy “All My Lovin’” is better and I like that crazy synth a lot plus William’s off beat song! The break is darn tasty too! Candy Bowman’s smoker “I Wanna Feel Your Love” needs no further presentation, what a stomper!

Keyboardist Jeff Lorber and his Band are next with “Best Part Of The Night”, a soul pop effort reaching not much higher than average. Richard John Smith’s song is not much better. Earl Turner’s “Love Caught You By Surprise” is quite catchy but far from a top-notch production. And I don’t like Elaine & Ellen’s track either but an early lay back mid-tempo effort of later New Jack Swing king Keith Sweat in “My Mind Is Made Up” bring me up again! He’s perhaps not the best singer out there but I sure like his soar voice.

Tough and funky “Word Up” by Legacy is nice and so are the three beauties of The Jones Girls and their 1983 hit “On Target”. Next up is yet another bouncy funker in The Husdson’s “You Keep Me up”. I really like the end result here, tight and solid! Kim Herte’s sensual “Do You Wanna Dance With (With Me) is THE highlight of the CD. This is a brilliant production with sassy vocals and a soulfully interpreted funky beat that makes you craving for more. Glass wraps it up with moody “Let Me Feel Your Heartbeat”.

So what about CD 2? The megamix is very competent and a pure joy to listen to. It is jam-packed with great tunes of Krystol, Sahara, Beau Williams, Lillo Thomas and Evelyn “Champagne” King. The big surprise for me was Legion’s infectious and messy mid 80s achievement “Guarantee”, LOVE IT!

Considering it’s a 2CD set with an exclusive megamix CD by Frankie Rodriquez besides some really competent 12” versions it’s an easy buy.

Patrik Andersson, February 2009

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