Cold Blood

Lydia Pense and Cold Blood

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A slight improvement over Lydia from two years earlier, this album suffers from uneven material. Since the highlights are by outsiders -- "Drink the Wine" by Nicholas Ashford and Valerie Simpson, and "Blinded By Love" by Allen Toussaint -- the fault clearly lies with the band's own material. It's too bad, because singer Lydia Pense still sounds great seven years after the band's debut album, and Cold Blood has rarely sounded as comfortable with its preferred white funk sound. The Al Kooper-penned "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know" gives the sultry Pense a chance to lay out and wrap herself around a slow groove for a change.