QUENTIN MOORE; You Forgot Your Heart (Soulbol)

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Quentin Moore hails from Austin, Texas. The self-styled “last Mohican of Southern soul” – despite his youth he eschews electronic instruments and sampling – made quite a name for himself in and around the Lone Star State with his debut release ‘Vintage’. Fans of old school soul were engaged by the rustic, organic quality of his music and they’ll be delighted with this follow up collection, ‘You Forgot Your Heart’.

The unpretentious 16 tracker is a little more polished than that debut but it nevertheless retains that peculiar organic, almost naive feel… most apparent on the LP’s title cut. The track’s a charming, simple slab of old school soul with an interesting  contemporary edge. It boasts a cheeky, catchy little riff that reminds me, oddly, of Alicia Key’s ‘You Don’t Know My Name’. The jaunty ‘Its Funny’ is similarly old school while the best of the ballads is a duet with our old friend Tess Henley, ‘I Could Fall In Love’. It begins in lazy, languid mood before igniting as only old-fashioned soul can. Maybe the organ-led outro goes on a tad too long and perhaps that’s the fault with the album. Quentin, you see, has produced everything himself and with no one around to rein him in he sometimes lets things go to excess…. as in the rocky guitar effects on cuts like ‘Witch’.

Equally odd for someone who wants to keep the old school soul flag flying high, is the inclusion of a rap. On ‘I Wanna Be In Love’ he lets the wonderfully named Arkansas Bo rhyme freely over the track’s ending and it somehow spoils the mood of the whole album. Don’t get me wrong, unlike most conservative soul folk, your reviewer’s got nothing against hip-hop; it’s just that in this context it sounds wrong; indeed Mr Bo himself sounds a little uncomfortable with the exercise.

Take that out of the mix, though, and you have a decent, rooted  modern soul set …”modern” in the proper context. .. i.e. “contemporary” rather than “retro” and because of that serious soul folk might want to investigate. Do so @ www.qmooremusic.com

(BB) 3/5