Latest offering from Butch Ingram’s Philly-revival label, Society Hill Records is an 11 track album from sweet harmony vocal group, TRU. The trio is made up of three seasoned soul singers, leader James “Jimi” Williams and Billy Maynor alongside Ricky Style.
Tru opened their Society Hill account with an acclaimed single, ‘I’m Still Waiting’ – a sweet and lush ballad that brought back memories of the best of outfits like Blue Magic and the Stylistics. The success of the single prompted the band to put together the album – ‘Someday We’ll All Be Free’, named, of course, for their cover of the Donny Hathaway song. Tru take no liberties with it and producer Ingram provide a typically lush Philly production to Donny’s musical message.
Indeed, most of the long player is in similar vein – pleasing, easy-on-the-ear ballads like ‘I Wanna Be By Your Side’ and what seems to be band’s theme ‘My Love Is Tru’. There are a few more covers too – Billy Paul’s ‘Let’s Make A Baby’ and Patti Labelle’s ‘If Only You Knew’ amongst them. There’s also a take on the Jacksons’ ‘Let Me Show You The Way To Go’ – one of only three cuts that lift the tempo above balladic. The other two are a cover of Instant Funk’s ‘I Got My Mind Made Up’ and a very odd ‘All Over Your Face’ which opens the album. It aspires towards the tempos of soulful house but doesn’t quite get there. Like I said “odd”. If you’re a Philly ballad fan, skip that one and enjoy the throwback sounds of the rest of the album!