Review: Marcus Malone – Stand Or Fall

Posted on: Sunday, Jun 8, 2014

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Marcus Malone – Stand Or Fall

(Redline Music: MCPS-RLB1813)

The album comprises ten expertly-written, original compositions. Marcus Malone, on lead vocals, is backed by an impressive array of musicians: Stuart Dixon, Sean Nolan and Julian Burdock on guitars, Winston Blissett on bass, Christopher Nugent on drums, Roger Cotton and Moz Gamble on keyboards and Will Wilde and Alan Glen on harmonica. In addition, backing vocals are provided by Chantelle Duncan-Heath, Dani Wilde and Eno Williams-Uffort.

The upbeat rocker, “Living The Blues” starts the ball rolling with a driving slide guitar accompaniment and a vibrant harmonica solo from Will Wilde, followed by the slower and more deliberate title song of the album with gospel-style backing vocals. The heavier, medium-paced “Ain’t No Tellin’” leads into the bluesy ballad, “It’s Gonna Take Time”, while “Detroit City Blues” is another steady-beating rocker and “Slow Down” is a bouncy shuffle, which is enhanced by another helping of fine harp playing from Will Wilde.

After “Jealous Kind”, an excellent slow blues, the tempo is raised by the upbeat rocker, “One Woman Man” and “Can’t Stop Lovin’ You”, a superb fast-moving head-nodder. “Under Pressure” is a spikey-rhythmed number boasting a terrific guitar solo.

For a reason beyond my comprehension, the album is concluded with repeats of two of the previous tracks – “Living The Blues” and an extended version of “It’s Gonna Take Time”, neither of which is sufficiently different from its first appearance to warrant a second airing. Despite that slight reservation, this is a high quality concoction, which is no less than we expect from the hugely talented Marcus Malone whose tremendous vocals are supplemented by excellent musicianship.

LIONEL ROSS

www.marcusmalone.com

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