The Neville Brothers, Valence Street

by Nichole Rustin

 

This is the type of music you know that someone put their foot into, as they say. “Valence Street,” the title cut is a funky-blues instrumental and is named after the street the four Neville brothers grew up on in New Orleans. The songs range across the many permutations of relationships one can have—and this is perhaps because they reach back to all the influences and people that they knew and worked with to concoct their style. The album art is incredibly beautiful black and white images of Louisiana bayous, New Orleans streets, and the brothers themselves. Cuts to pay particular attention to are “Utterly Beloved,” inspired by the Oprah film, “Until We Meet Again,” a grown-up R&B love song, and “Tears,” inspired by Native American culture. Speaking about love songs, “Mona Lisa,” produced by Wyclef reinforces that there is nothing like a hip-hop love song.

Valence Street

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