Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 25 November 2014

Album: John Legend & the Roots, Wake Up! (Columbia)

Theres never a wrong time to revisit the core values of Seventies soul and funk, though it may have been more effective for John Legend & The Roots to release Wake Up!, a selection of politicised black covers from that era, during a previous administration's tenure, when the admonition was more pertinent.

As it is, there's something a touch too comfortable about the project, which favours smooth over gritty throughout. Rappers Common and The Roots' own Black Thought pop up to add a sharper edge to some tracks, but picking the nebulous Wholy Holy as the Marvin Gaye cover speaks volumes about the general tone. The best track is the longest, a version of Bill Withers' disabled-soldier lament I Can't Write Left-Handed, which builds up a head of steam over 12 minutes.

DOWNLOAD THIS I Can't Write Left-Handed; Wake Up Everybody; Hard Times

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Your Horoscopes by Russell Grant

Sagittarius:

Be practical with your money. Although you're not materialistic, you should have something to show for your hard work. Owning your home will protect you from future economic uncertainty. Keep your eyes open for a cosy property near a body of water. The sight of a pond, lake or river will soothe your fiery energy. A youngster or romantic partner will balk at your decision to move. Don't let an angry outburst deter you from your goal. It's time to establish roots.More