Tom Jones

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Delilah Review

by Thom Jurek

The Goldies label is dependable for one thing: you never know what you're going to get. This compilation by Tom Jones is a case in point. While there are some of his classic songs here such as "Delilah" and "She's a Lady," they are not the original versions. They're recorded with a big studio band with a funked up bassline and some cheesy keyboards with a bigger than God horn section and a doubled up female backing chorus. But those aren't the biggest surprises. Those come later, making this an almost indispensable collection. Some of the other cuts on this set are a killer -- if overblown -- version of the hard soul nugget "Knock on Wood," and that's just the beginning. Over a total of 14 cuts that all feel as if they were somehow recorded for television (since there is no info you'll never know), you get versions of the Beatles' "Let It Be," John Lennon's last single "(Just Like) Starting Over," the Eagles "Take It to the Limit," Eric Clapton's "Lay Down Sally," and Eddie Cooley's R&B classic "Fever!" But that's not all. "Let Your Love Flow," "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'," and Lionel Richie's "Endless Love," Otis Redding's "I Can't Turn You Loose," and Ronnie Bell's "Celebration" are here, too. This is an utterly surreal and vocally fantastic set of Tom Jones performances. His voice is in powerful form, and the arrangements for all their bombast are not all that distracting or out of line with what he's trying to put across. If you've already got the hits and wonder if there is anything else worth having, this baby is it.

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