ALEX HARRIS: Back To Us (Shanachie)

ALEX HARRIS is a new age old school soul man. That’s to say’s a newish kid on the block but his musical passion is classic, southern soul. Not surprising. You see, Alex hails from Manchester, deep down in Georgia where his father was the local pastor and young Alex was soon singing gospel with his siblings. Secular music quickly came knocking  and the young performer was soon sharing stages with people like Aretha, John Legend and Lionel Richie.

We first came across Alex’s music back in 2020 via his single ‘Rollin’’  and on the track, his gospel/Southern roots were evident in the power and passion of his delivery. Hear a lot more of the same on our man’s brand new album, ‘Back To Us’ – a 11 tracker that delivers soul the way it was! Even without listening, that’s evident from the track list where you’ll spot that Alex has chosen to cover some tunes from a couple of soul giants. Thus enjoy new, authentic readings of Otis Redding’s aching ‘I’ve Got Dreams To Remember’ and a mournful, churchy take on Solomon Burke’s ‘Cry To Me’. Clearly Mr H is a Burke fan as the album also features another song associated with the ‘King Of Rock Soul’. It’s the Kevin Welch-penned ‘Millionaire’ which Burke recorded for his 2006 album, ‘Nashville’,  though the song’s may be better known in the 2017 version by country star Chris Stapelton.

‘Millionaire’ along with powerful and strident ‘Somethings Gotta Change’ were  the album heralding singles and here  Mr H  delivers plenty more real throwback sounds like  the haunting, building ‘Don’t Hide’, the delicate ‘Falling For You’, the Stax-flavoured ‘Lose My Religion’(with guest input from The Monnophonics) and the country-flecked ‘First Sight’.

Alex Harris’ ‘Back To Us’ is released via Shanachie on April 12th.

(BB) 4/5