The Spellbinders

The Magic of the Spellbinders

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The Spellbinders' sole LP, in the manner of many albums of the day, combined previously released 45s (both sides of their first three singles, from 1965 and 1966) with five additional tracks. It made for a reasonably strong mid-'60s soul album, not so much due to the group's vocal talents (which were certainly competent) as the robust production of Van McCoy, who also wrote four of the songs. One of those McCoy compositions was "For You," the group's only hit of sorts (reaching the R&B Top 30 in 1965). Take away the production, however, and the material isn't nearly as distinctive, as much of it's similar but inferior to bigger acts like the Temptations, the Impressions, and the Drifters (the resemblance to the last of those groups really coming to the forefront on "I Need Your Love"). Still, it's an enjoyable listen, and if it's not among the most memorable of obscure '60s pop-soul LPs, it's an above-average one for its category. All eleven of the tracks are included on the 2007 CD compilation Chain Reaction, which also adds historical liner notes and both sides of their two post-LP singles from 1966 and 1967.