Frankie Knuckles


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Though Frankie Knuckles has been preaching the gospel of house since the dawn of the '80s, his mixing (on record) has never sounded as exuberant and excited as on Motivation. Ever the dancefloor veteran, Knuckles eases listeners in with a mid-tempo instrumental (his own "Keep on Movin'"), then hits that other level with a mini-set of testifying vocal tracks featuring Annette Taylor ("Faith"), Urban Blues Project with Michael Proctor ("Deliver Me"), BOP with SuSu Bobien ("All Through Me"), and Shernette May ("Alright With Me"). The latter half is just slightly less uplifting (but not a comedown by any means), with still more joyous tracks and effortless transitions. Knuckles sticks mostly to new tracks -- the only ones more than two years old are a pair of his own productions, plus Kerri Chandler's classic "Hallelujah" -- but finds that old religion easily, preaching from the DJ booth like no other mixer. In fact, it only takes a single listen to prove the wisdom of what Knuckles says in the liners: "This album isn't about religion but about belief."

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