Monday, July 2, 2012
QUANTIC & ALICE RUSSELL :: LOOK AROUND THE CORNER
“Look Around The Corner”, out on deluxe full-colour 10” vinyl and digital download on 20th February 2012, is the first single from Quantic and Alice Russell’s hotly anticipated collaborative album of the same name, which follows in April on Tru Thoughts.
A multi-layered, intricate and stunningly realised song, “Look Around The Corner” is as enticing an album opener as one could hope to hear, enveloping the listener in a bittersweet embrace of soul, blues, folk and gospel with the inimitable swing of Quantic’s world-renowned band, the Combo Bárbaro. Alice Russell’s soulful, powerhouse vocals, Quantic’s trademark warm production, the big string sections and spine-tingling harmonies, and the uplifting vibe and unshakable hooks will no doubt see it gracing playlists the World over.
Tru Thoughts’ two all-time biggest selling artists, Quantic and Alice Russell have previously collaborated on a handful of immensely popular individual songs, for The Quantic Soul Orchestra and for Alice’s solo project. Displaying a fresh yet deeply authentic and passionate approach to their crafts, they both played a considerable part in fuelling the UK’s funk and soul resurgence of the 2000s (out of which sprang the hits of artists including Mark Ronson, Amy Winehouse and Adele) and have established themselves as much-loved British independent artists, with an ever-growing international fanbase and coverage across the World’s music and cultural media.
The combined talents of singer Alice Russell and producer/musician Will Holland (aka Quantic) have always been a match made in heaven, but ‘Look Around The Corner’ is the pair’s first full long-player together. Recorded at Quantic’s Sonido del Valle studio in his adopted home city of Cali, Colombia, the album finds them delighting in their innate musical chemistry and revisiting the spirit of their hugely popular previous collaborations, and this time they raise the bar yet again with backing from the Combo Bárbaro. Pushing the concept of their previous work together, reflecting the locale and the players’ backgrounds, they have infused the style with a Latin undertone. Rather like the soul records made in Miami and New York in the 70s, or the disco from the Bronx, this accent of Latin players still allows the blues and soul sound to take centre stage. Chicago’s Chess label was a big influence on the production aesthetic, and a mutual love of Minnie Riperton fed into the vocal melodies, particularly on the lead track.
The record features Mike Simmonds (Alice Russell’s regular strings guru who joined them in Colombia from London for the recording), as well as the revered pianist Alfredito Linares, bassist Fernando Silva and conga player Freddy Colorado, all from the Combo Bárbaro. Wilson Viveros, from coastal town Buenaventura, was an invited drummer - more known for playing timbales for Guayacan, Fruko and Joe Madrid, he is also an incredible kit drummer. Also on drums for some songs was Larry Joseph, a talented Jazz drummer who resides and plays in Cali. Alfredito is the instrumentalist star of the show, sprinkling his magical and charismatic brand of bluesy, boogaloo piano throughout the album.
Quantic and Alice Russell will be touring extensively throughout the USA, Europe and the UK in March-May, with a hand-picked group of players comprising members of the Combo Bárbaro and musicians from Alice’s own band.