[13 February 2014]
The ambience of the vintage recording is a tall task for modern recordings to match, particularly in the soul department. But R&B possesses a different sound in present times compared to the past, rendering the availability of the rare effort naturally iconic to an extent. Sounds of the City Experience, a new compilation, is a special rarity showcasing soul at its best, where horns and gospel-infused vocals were king. Never intended to be a hit, Sounds of the City Experience (also the name of the band) is the truest realization of ‘music for music’s sake.’ While not an acclaimed masterpiece, the album undeniably delivers the aforementioned ambience of the lost days. Instrumental highlight “Getting Down” Down” is reminiscent of Isaac Hayes’ incredible, colorful arrangements while “Babylon”, another spirited winner, is socially conscious, embodying the spirit of the racially charged 1970s. Across 13 tracks, Sounds of the City Experience delivers an abundance of worthwhile music.