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Soul Express CD of the Month - April-June 2012

Pete Belasco: Lights On CD
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Lights On

US Pete Belasco Music CD, 2012

I Ain’t Doin’ It – Lights On – Rock It – Down – My Eyes – Repay You – Stubborn (Stay Focussed) – Later – One – Just Me – Sweeter – Who’s The Man – My Eyes (Organic Mix) – One (Organic Mix)

It’s an unbelievable decade on from the superb “Deeper” album and this has been well worth the wait. That CD always recalls a happy, hot summer and as I play this new set the temperatures here in the UK are simply soaring...thanks, Pete!!!!! The music on here is simply delicious and not a million miles away from his last album...the Marvin Gaye / Curtis Mayfield mellow vibe is right on the money and the atmosphere is chilled, sexy and very mellow indeed. Pete Belasco has an intimate style...I’d say that his vocal style is tender, close and on every song I can imagine him cosying up to his Lady and whispering these words to her...heartfelt, synesthesic and as caressing as the smoothest of silks.

The opening God! It is to die for...the warm keyboards are straight out of the 1970s / early 1980s and ooze the essence of summer heat and sultry nights making love. Pete really has found his groove on this...I cannot get over songs like this. Timeless, essential and beyond reproach.

The deep rhythm of “Lights On” is slow to stop with a heartbeat rhythm and sensual 70s soulful keyboards and timbales. The synth is eerie and gives rise to goose-bumps on the skin. You won’t find this kind of quality anywhere else...but should you want some form of comparison please dig out Maxwell’s “Sumthin’ Sumthin’ (Mellosmooth Mix)”...if you adore that sexy vibe then this CD is for you!!!!!

The jazzy “Rock It” adds real texture...and I can’t believe the summer vibe remains unabated and suitably hot. “Down” also cannot be faulted...wispish, dreamy and a great 70s keyboard riff can be discovered here a la Barry White. And the best thing is you will play these songs once and instantly love them BUT...and it’s a big but...the more you hear them the more you will love them. The man is genius!!!! Check out the clever “My Eyes” – a song that I have hit repeat on more than a hatrick at any one play. Cool piano and timbales greet us with “Repay You” and seriously helps further solidify an already solid set.

Swirling strings and 70s Fender Rhodes keyboard meets our senses with “Stubborn (Stay Focussed)” which vocally harks back to the most sensual elements of Marvin Gaye and Curtis Mayfield...simply put, beautiful. Fans of sweet early 70s sweet soul will reveal at the mastery of “Later” and more especially the super sexy “One” complete with French horns, sitar, and piccolo...straight out of the early Philly stable. Amazing! “Sweeter” contains some gorgeous keys a la Bob James style and again the 70s vibe stable throughout.

You know, musically 2012 has been dead as a doornail for me...but this CD stands strong, sturdy and tall. Thank God for it. An essential release for lovers of real sensuous soul music.

Barry Towler

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