Various Artists

10 All Time Soul Classics, Vol. 1: The Best of Philadelphia International

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Madacy's 10 All Time Soul Classics, Vol. 1: The Best of Philadelphia International is a brief round-up of some very smooth, very romantic songs from the vaults of the great soul label Philadelphia International's vaults. The sound of Philly soul is lush strings, laid-back (sometimes funky) musical foundations, and gritty vocalists on top with a side of vocal group harmonies. While the ten songs here may not be the biggest hits the label ever released, they all are prime examples of the label's sound. The best cuts are among the best soul songs ever; Lou Rawls' "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine," Teddy Pendergrass' "Turn Out the Lights," and the O'Jays' "Usta Be My Girl" are all 100 percent Philly soul. Taken together with 10 All Time Soul Classics, Vol. 2: The Best of Philadelphia International, Madacy has put together a decent history of the label and the sound. If they had packaged them less cheesily and boiled the two discs down into one, they really might have had something essential.

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