EPHEMERALS: Nothin Is Easy (2013) Free download

Rating: ★★★★★ Nothing is easy these days it seems – including releasing a record and making money out of it. In fact the very notion of making money out of popular recorded music appears to have become what you might call – ephemeral. Which goes some way to explaining why lushly orchestrated retro soul of this quality, rich in analogue warmth and boasting a singer with genuine – er – soul, should have to be put out for free.

Ephemerals is the latest project of producer, songwriter and guitarist Hillman Mondegreen – the man behind Hannah Williams & The Tastemakers signed initially to underground funk label Record Kicks and then to Sony. Which should tell you something. Anyway – here he is again with his latest project like some sort of soul Hannibal Smith assembling an A-Team of many of the same crew (including one Jimi Needles on drums) and a new singer with much the same vibe – a mixture of soaring soul and moody torch songs with a bluesy vibe. This is probably the most convincing challenge to stateside acts like Charles Bradley and Aloe Blacc (who are clearly the target Mondegreen is aiming at) to issue from the UK yet. Well, I say ‘the UK’ – singer Wolf was born stateside and transplanted to France in his teens but he’s man who posseses a voice that is one hundred per cent classic. Standouts include the horns-rich funky soul of Call It What You Want and instro The Oligarch along with pleading slow burner Loving Guaranteed and perhaps the best showcase for Wolf’s talents – the pic Six Days A Week which amply demonstrate this crew’s feel for late sixties and early seventies soul music with enough production and songwriting nous to guarantee a more mainstream appeal. Definitely one to watch. If I was Sony – I’d be on the phone again now…Cop it below for nothing although it is on a ‘name your price’ deal so you know…


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