With the commercially generated faux love fest that is Valentine’s Day looming ahead there are plenty of romantic music compilations around that the record company execs hope might tempt you to part with your bucks to help you woo whoever you feel like wooing! If however you’re a little fed up/disenchanted with the whole hearts and flowers thing then may we point you to a new compilation that looks at Valentine’s Day from a slightly different perspective…. it’s the wonderfully named ‘You’re Not Gonna Hurt Me (A Valentine’s Day Kiss Off)’.

The 14 tracker features songs of female empowerment. The music is about relationships with boyfriends that have gone sour; a perfect retort to those boyfriends who certainly don’t deserve a Valentine’s gift, let alone a Valentine’s card!

Dave Godin might have labeled the music here “Deep Soul” – tortured songs that tell of cheating, double dealing and belittling. Indeed the “queen of Deep Soul”, Doris Duke offers one of the album highlights… ‘Divorce Decree’ – the title says it’s all and Ms Duke delivers as only she could… stark dark and convincing! Amongst other familiar names is Irma Thomas whose contribution is the wonderfully titled ‘You’re The Dog (I Do The Barking Myself)’. Another self-explanatory titled cut which proves that “Deep Soul” isn’t always about ballads. Ms T’s tune is tough and feisty – funky even! Sondra Simon’s ‘Dead Weight’ is even more up-tempo; a sprightly dancer in fact!

In truth, though, most of the songs are ballads with highlights numbering Norma Rivers’ ‘You’re Not Gonna Hurt Me’, Candace Love’s ‘Uh Uh Boy That’s A No No’ and the equally familiar ‘Casanova’ from Ruby Andrews.

The PR people describe ‘You’re Not Gonna Hurt Me (A Valentine’s Day Kiss Off)’ as a scathing anti-Valentine’s Day card. Yes, for sure – but equally it’s a wonderful collection of proper distaff soul music… out now!