Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Soul Sides': "Allen Toussaint - For the Sisters"

Allen Toussaint: Soul Sister
Fingers and Toes
From Life, Love and Faith (WEA, 1972)

[T]he beat is catchy enough but what really sells this are Toussaint’s vocals, the male back-ups and the unexpected female singers who come in to sing, “thank you brother, thank you baby,” immediately followed by that the men, vigorously hollering back, “Hey you!” As a sequence, it’s hellaciously awesome.

I can’t claim that anything else on this album can top “Soul Sister” but if you ever get tired of just putting that tune on repeat (but really, how can you?) you can always flip over to “Fingers and Toes” for a far moodier ballad that’s pretty much the emotional antithesis of “Soul Sister’s” cheery, anything-can-happen vibe. This is a song at the end of love and damn if Toussaint doesn’t even make that sound compelling (a really intriguing hook on this song, btw. Sounds like a chorus written a couple thousand miles north of NOLA even if the rhythm is all Crescent City).

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