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BBMM@10 Recommended Album: The British Collective ‘Vol. 1: The Renaissance’...

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BBMM@10 Recommended Album: The British Collective 'Vol. 1: The Renaissance Begins' (TBC)

"This was an obvious BBMM recommended Album on account of this being the first outing of a collective of established British soul/R&B acts, which has never been done on this scale!"

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BBMM@10 Recommended Album: The British Collective 'Vol. 1: The Renaissance Begins' (TBC)

I'm still gutted that I missed the official release party for this album, especially as there was no good reason, except I forgot to progamme my electronic diary to remind meI Anyway, I'm grateful that Michael of British Soul Renaissance brought this album to our attrention at the July British Black Music Month Round Table Discussion.

The British Collective consist of Junior Giscombe, Leee John (of Imagination fame), Noel McKoy, Omar and Don-e, bona fide R&B/soul acts who've individually had successful careers spanning the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. This collective feels organic, and it seems democratic, judging by how the vocal duties are shared on the various tracks.

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The album kicks off with 'A Piece Of Heaven', a head-nodding R&Ber on which the vocals of all the Collective members does shine. It can also be fun trying to find out which of the five vocalists has the lead spot on the mic. The next track 'Stay', is another groovy cut - one of my favourite cuts on the album, which should also do the business on R&B radio and clubs. Curiously the heavy electronic b-line driven 'House Of Love', which sounds like something from Imagination, doesn't feature Leee's vocals. China Black's Errol Reid is the guest singer on that cut.

Considering some of the singers, such as Noel McKoy, came from the reggae scene, it's not surprising that one reggae-ish track is included in the form of 'Take Your Time', featuring guest siger Hughie Crawford. Indeed, they take Trevor Walter's pop-reggae tune 'Love Me Tonight' and turn it into a veritable soulster, and another stand out track. The soul and R&B flavour is broken by the UK garagey 'Won't You Come Over', which features guest singer Andrew Roachford and the funkster 'Romantic'. Junior or someone else in the Collective has fun by using snatches from 'Mama Used To Say' on 'Papa'!

If you haven't already, go discover this album!

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