Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 2 October 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

Libra:

Powerful emotions are causing you to call some friendships into question. You're tired of being treated like a second class citizen. Someone who constantly cancels plans at the last minute does not value your time. It may be time to part ways. Don't worry about being alienated. A social butterfly like you will never be lonely. The important thing is to be discerning about the company you keep. Surround yourself with caring, attentive people who support you in good times and bad.More