Eleventh Hour

Hollywood Hot

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In the '70s R&B became much more album-minded than it had been in the '50s and '60s, when LPs seemed like an afterthought for many R&B artists. Singles were still important -- very important, in fact -- but as the '70s progressed, R&B artists became more and more interested in getting listeners to buy their albums as well as their singles. A killer single could entice the listener into acquiring the LP, but if the album on the whole fell short of a single's excellence, the listener was bound to be disappointed. That was the case with the Eleventh Hour, which enjoyed a major hit in 1975 with the suggestive "Hollywood Hot." The single was a gem, although the rest of the Hollywood Hot LP (which didn't come out until early 1976) isn't as strong. Produced by Bob Crewe -- who co-wrote Labelle's 1974 smash "Lady Marmelade" and co-wrote most of the songs on this album -- Hollywood Hot boasts a stunning title song, but is, for the most part, merely competent. It isn't a bad album, however, other than the title track, it isn't a great one either. The Eleventh Hour was a talented group that specialized in gritty, rock-influenced soul along the lines of Ike & Tina Turner and "It's Your Thing"-era Isley Brothers. Unfortunately, the group fails to live up to its potential on the uneven Hollywood Hot.