Marc Broussard

S.O.S.: Save Our Soul

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It might have come out in 2007, but S.O.S.: Save Our Soul is a record very much grounded in the soul music of the 1960s and 1970s, both in material and sound. To begin with, all but one of the songs is a cover of a '60s or '70s soul tune. The arrangements have a very vintage sound as well, singer Marc Broussard and multi-instrumentalist/background singer Calvin Turner being the only constant factors in a rotating cast of players. Give Broussard credit for not opting, for the most part, for overdone standards; there are covers of a few big hits here (Marvin Gaye's "Inner City Blues [Make Me Wanna Holler]," the Staple Singers' "Respect Yourself," the Pointer Sisters' "Yes We Can, Can"), but also interpretations of lesser-known songs associated with Stevie Wonder, Bobby Womack, Rance Allen, Al Green, and Blood, Sweat & Tears. On its own terms, it's an OK record; Broussard's a good (if not too distinctive) singer, and the musical grooves are solid. If you made a mixtape of the originals, though, it would blow this out of the water, making this an inessential tribute to vintage soul that's rather pointless except as a showcase of Broussard's skill in carrying on the tradition.

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