July 17, 2010

Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings – 100 Days, 100 Nights
soul, funk

Sharon Jones might well be the coolest vocalist on the planet right now. Totally self-assured, with wicked attitude, stunning range, depth, maturity and a fantastic sense of humour, she’s a complete package of a singer who’s virtually without peer. When you back her up with the Dap-Kings, one of the tightest groups currently making funk and soul music, the results are pretty much unbeatable. My introduction to them was with 2005’s slow ‘n’ smooth Naturally, an album I loved, but thought was lacking a little too much in upbeat floor-shakers, an area where Jones really comes into her own. Where that album narrowly missed the mark, 2007’s 100 Days, 100 Nights succeeded spectacularly, and at least half the tracks grind awaySharon Jones and The Dap-Kings - 100 Days, 100 Nights with an irresistibly funky abandon. The slower numbers are still there too, including a couple of beautiful gospel turns, and they’re better than ever before. This is deep-down, authentic soul music that could easily convince a casual listener that they’re hearing to something from the late-60s, yet it never drops into being an outright retread. Sharon Jones and her fabulous Dap-Kings leave their mark on every track, making for an album full of lively spirit and soulful personality.


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