The New Mastersounds – Be Yourself
The Leeds band has played gigs in Mexico, Europe, the USA, and all over the UK, with highlights including the legendary Jazz Cafe in London, Chicago’s famed House Of Blues, and backing Sax legend Lou Donaldson.
Other career highlights include being sampled by Dj Shadow, remixed by Kenny Dope, as well as providing the soundtrack for the Commonwealth Games in 2002.
One of the standout cuts, with a gem of a feature from pre-Grammy-winning, platinum-selling Corine Bailey Rae, is ‘Your Love Is Mine.’ The sublime soul ballad, in a similar vein of a classic Al Green or Minnie Ripperton song, would fit perfectly at a summertime BBQ.
The single is Your Love Is Mine.
With Corrine Bailey Rae.
‘You’ve Had It All’ sounds like an updated KPM Library banger, with its prominent Hammond organ and monstrous guitars. Diggers and beat heads also get a nice treat with the huge, hard-hitting drum break halfway through.
‘Better Off Dead’ takes a page from Sitar Funk virtuoso Ananda Shankar’s book with a trip through India on the Psychedelia-tinged track, which also includes another killer drum break and more Hammond Organ.
‘Do What You Gotta Do’ is an uptempo dance floor-filler that boasts lavish acoustic piano in a nod to Ramsey Lewis.
With their staggering combined raw talent and roaring Funk in the territory of classic Meters grooves, moments of subtle pop tendencies, and a dash of downtempo beats a la Portishead, some of the rambunctious grooves would feel right at home in a Guy Ritchie gangster movie.
Overall, the album shows diverse musical influences ranging from Library music and cinematic funk to yacht rock, with elements of contemporary Jazz and Soul, as well as a broad range of instruments including wild synthesizer effects, Sitar, Hammond Organ, and electric piano.
The New Mastersounds are still very active today, and here they celebrate a milestone with a fresh look at their second album; although now close to 20 years old, it has aged brilliantly.