It is great to see fellow bassists be the driving force behind a new CD. Darryl Anders is such a force for “Believe in Love”. Darryl wrote most of the music, produced and laid down the groove that makes it all come together.
Hailing from the Bay area, Darryl assembled a talented group of musicians and vocalists to bring us a very soulful, total package of R&B. The arrangements are tight and precise and the bass is prominent in the mix (a feature that I appreciate).
The title track “Believe in Love” opens up with some juicy B-3 Hammond, drums, guitar and bass and quickly give way to a nice intertwining of the bass and the lead vocalist (Indra Jones). The tune progresses with a solid structure of a funky, upbeat kind of strut and a chorus where Indra and Darryl collaborate with the background vocals; a rap from Michael Blake carries the tune out to it’s end.
“Tell Me Where it Hurts” has a sultry, soulful feel. The track opens with a rich bass line that lays the foundation for Indra to build on, with that smooth yet powerful voice. The chorus is catchy and the general feel of this tune reminds me of Grover Washington Jr’s music.
“Time Cannot Erase” is a bittersweet melancholy smooth piece of music. Darryl sings this one with a deep smooth baritone voice. Songs like this have a universal appeal as we all have had suffered the pain of a lost love and remorse for how things went. The lyrics are clear with their message but the purely instrumental version of this tune conveys as much feeling. The sax carries this song fine without the lead vocals.
Any musician that takes on Stevie Wonder tunes is a brave individual, as the bar was set so high from the start. None-the-less, AgapeSoul’s version of “Sir Duke” is quite respectable, with Vince Lars on Saxes carrying the melody and chorus (Multiple tracks layered). This guy is good and has great tone and technique (I am a stickler for Sax as my son plays well). More flawless bass from Darryl!
“Heaven Can Hear Us” brings a nice blues feel to the record. This one isn’t another standard twelve-bar format in that it has that gospel vibe working for it. Solid vocals and nice B-3 Hammond make you think you could be hearing this one in church.
“Voice of Reason” brings an interesting Samba-like, syncopated percussion to our attention. A very cool bass line compliments the melody and chromatic changes give the tune depth and keeps you guessing where it will go next.
I guess you get the idea by now… this CD is a solid work of R&B! Smooth and precise bass lines from Darryl are a treat for all us bass musicians and the entire band has a sound that is pleasant and emotionally moving. I capture a very spiritual inspiration in these songs and some true bearing of Darryl’s soul. There is certainly a good reason that this CD was No. 1 on the UK’s Soul charts
All you need is a few candles and a glass or two of wine and you have a romantic soundtrack for the night.
More about Darryl Anders and AgapeSoul at www.agapesoul.com