KINDRED THE FAMILY SOUL: Legacy Of Love (We’re Not A Label Records)

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Kindred The Family Soul (husband and wife team, Fatin Dantzler and Aja Graydon) have never been regarded as a Premier League soul collective, but serious soul connoisseurs love ’em and have done ever since their break through days with Hidden Beach. The secret of Kindred’s attraction to the core soul crowd, or so it seems to me, is their ability to meld old school soul sensitivities with more contemporary neo-soul grooves. That cocktail is then presented by two voices in proper harmony. We often talk about the vocal alchemy that sibling groups achieve but though not related by blood (obviously) Mr and Mrs K’s (again obviously) deep relationship has created a very special vocal chemistry.

‘Legacy Of Love’ is, I think, the duo’s sixth long player and, released on their own wonderfully-named label, the 13 tracker offers everything that we’ve come to know and love about the Kindreds. The set’s topped and tailed by that hackneyed neo-soul gambit… an intro and an outro which sums up where the band and their music is coming from… essentially, they say, that life is a miracle and love, in life, creates the magic. A sweet thought and to help them deliver they draft in daughter, Lanaa, to recite part of the lyric. If you know Lamar Robinson’s wonderful ‘Family Tree’ you’ll hear a similarity.

There are more neo soul shadings on cuts like ‘Welcome To My World’, ‘Nobody Like You’ and ‘Get There’… all very Jill Scott (hardly surprising given her early championing of the Kindreds). ‘Another One’ offers something quite different. This one is contemporary R&B with a hint of the Fuggees.

Our favourite cuts at the moment are the gritty ‘Never know’ and the finger-clickin’ good title cut. The ‘Legacy Of Love’ song is real feel-good soul music and would be a good choice as next single, following up the success of ‘All My People’. That one is another album highlight. It also comes in a second mix… Ernie’s Boogie Back Remix. Don’t know who good old Ernie is but he does a great job crafting a proper optimistic summer vibe (sadly a bit too late for summer!) The modern soul crowd, however, need to check it our pronto! They’ll find plenty more goodies too within the rest of the long player.

(BB) 4/5