Various Artists

Let's Crossover Again

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AllMusic Review by

Now this is a soul collection. Concentrating on the evolution of the music from its early raw dynamic in both its bluesier and R&B incarnations at Stax and its beat-conscious dance rhythms at Motown during the early '60s, the music on these 24 tracks is decidedly different. The groove began to change in Memphis as it did in Detroit in the late '60s. Along with the somewhat excessive psychedelic experimentation that some artists would begin to employ in their productions, there came a period with more layered and textured arrangements, slower tempos, more polished vocals, and a widening and deepening of the dimensions of the sound of soul. These cuts epitomize that shift, as the "crossover" where soul's past met its present and future. With full discographical information and killer liner notes by U.K. Northern soul DJ and expert Ady Croasdell, Let's Crossover Again is an absolutely righteous and necessary compilation, one in which every track sheds some new light on the genre in general and in some cases offers a completely different view of an established artist. Great examples here would be the two opening tracks, "That's All" by Eddie Floyd and Johnnie Taylor's "Please Let Me In." Here are midtempo burners where the stomp and slam of the Stax rhythm section and the funky front-line work of Booker T. Jones and Steve Cropper are tempered with flowing horn lines and vocal lines that stress more than lyrics and become instruments in the mix. Later, in the Charmels' "I've Done It Again," the slow-tempo Stax ballad style is augmented by stunning chorus work -- both male and female -- and a muted horn section playing the accents at the end of the lines. Other highlights on this stunning set are Carla Thomas' "Closer to You," Cynthia & the Imaginations' "Nine Times Out of Ten," and the previously unreleased "City of Fools" by Colette Kelly. But it's all deeply moving, fully delightful, and so marvelous, feminine, and tough.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:54
2 3:39
3 2:11
4 2:19
5
3:26
6 4:56
7
2:52
8 3:49
9
3:11
10 2:49
11 3:04
12
4:03
13
3:00
14 3:12
15 2:37
16
3:23
17 4:16
18 3:36
19 2:14
20
3:57
21 2:34
22
4:06
23 3:58
24
3:42
blue highlight denotes track pick