Vintage soul music has long had a more welcome home in the United Kingdom than in the United States, where collectors and rabid fans have built a cottage industry out of trading and reissuing vintage R&B sides both famous and ridiculously obscure. Ady Croasdell and Randy Cozens are two British soul mavens who launched a "Rhythm 'n' Soul" club night in London in 1979, which has been continuing in one form or another ever since. Designed to replicate the mod-era dance nights that featured a wide variety of dance-friendly R&B sounds rather than just the Northern soul material that dominated the U.K. R&B scene, the club night's popularity led to Croasdell compiling a series of soul anthologies for the British Kent label, and with this set he goes back to the club dances that helped inspire it all. Croasdell's 20-page liner essay on the history of the 6T's Rhythm 'n' Soul Society will be tough going for most American readers (and more than a few in the U.K.), since it deals more with rivalries between different packs of soul fans, club licensing laws, and the layouts of the various venues that hosted his dates than the actual music, but the 25 great tunes on the CD testify that the man knows his stuff. Running the gamut from the cool sounds of Brenda Holloway's "When I'm Gone" to the frantic New Orleans beat of "Don't You Just Know It" by Huey "Piano" Smith, from Etta James' mid-'50s take on "The Wallflower (Roll with Me Henry)" to a handful of 1966 classics, from the jazz-flavored groove of "Yeh, Yeh!" from Mongo Santamaria to the woeful blue mood of Chuck Jackson's "Two Stupid Feet" and stopping at plenty of places in between, this is a great party disc for R&B connoisseurs, and ideal for either listening or grooving. No wonder this guy's club night has been running so long -- this guy and his pals know a great record when they hear one, and they've put 25 winners on this CD.
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AllMusic Review by Mark Deming