TRIO VALORE were one of those old, much-vaunted “supergroups”. The threesome were Steve White (The Style Council) on drums, Damon Minchella (Ocean Colour Scene, Paul Weller, Richard Ashcroft) on bass and Seamus Beaghen (Madness, Desmond Dekker, Tom Jones) on Hammond organ. They came together in 2008 via their mutual love of classic soul-jazz and their debut (and only) album. ‘The Return Of The Iron Monkey’ quickly won cult status with mods and rare groove collectors. The LP sold out quickly and is now hard to find – so step in Record Kicks who have just released a 15th anniversary edition of the album. It comes in limited edition Crystal Clear LP and digital deluxe edition with two bonus tracks.
If you don’t know the album, you’ll discover that it’s a 12 tracker that faithfully channels the classic organ-led soul jazz sound. The repertoire is a mix of orignals and covers. Amongst the covers are floor-shaking versions of Booker T’s ‘Hip Hug Her’, James Brown’s ‘Soul Power’, Amy Winehouse’s ‘Rehab’, Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Fire’ and the Rolling Stones’ ‘Paint It Black’. The best of the covers though has to be a swinging version of Jimmy McGriff’s ‘All About My Girl’. This is proper soul-jazz and if my memory serves me right, I think the first UK cover of this was by dear old Georgie Fame who, I’m sure, must have been a big influence on young Seamus Beaghen. The best of the originals are the boogaloo soul number ‘Dam Square’ and album’s title track.
TRIO VALORE’S ‘The Return Of The Iron Monkey’ is out now via Record Kicks on vinyl and digitally. The digital version offers two bonus tracks – ‘Put Em Down (Muro Di Gomma mix)’, which originally appeared as B side of the ‘Rehab’ 45, and a cover of Roy Budd’s classic film tune ‘Get Carter’.