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Beverley Knight - Soul UK
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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 July 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: CD+DVD
  • Label: Hurricane
  • ASIN: B004VQFQ3K
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,468 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Fairplay
2. Southern Freeez
3. Mama Used To Say
4. Say I'm Your Number One
5. When You Gonna Learn
6. Apparently Nothin'
7. There's Nothing Like This
8. Don't Be A Fool
9. Always and Forever
10. Round and Around
11. Cuddly Toy
12. Damn
13. One More Try

Product Description

Product Description

Beverley Knight presents her own versions of 13 classic UK soul tracks, including songs by Soul II Soul, Jamiroquai, Omar, Young Disciples, Roachford, George Michael, Junior and more.

BBC Review

The covers album is a noble tradition: a chance for an artist to pay tribute to their roots, to avoid writing any new material, and to present their listeners with songs that everyone knows they like already, because they've heard them. From Bowie to George Michael, John Legend to Paul Weller, a covers set is a chance to tell people where you're coming from and, often, to pause for breath while you work out where you're going to next.

Beverly Knight is a brilliant soul singer, who grew up at a time when black British music wasn't as united as it is in these days of grime riding high in the pop charts. High quality dance and soulful pop acts struggled to have more than one hit single, and very few - Rod Temperton's Heatwave and Jazzie B's Soul II Soul are notable exceptions - were able to maintain albums success and international fame.

Both those acts are referred to here on Soul UK. 'Soul' in this insistence is a fairly broad church, referring to the (generally brilliant) soul pop made in Britain over the last 30 years. As a testament to the often-overlooked music made in the days when RnB still meant Big Joe Turner, not Beyoncé, Soul UK is remarkably effective. The songs covered here are wide-ranging, from the Prince-like rock pop of Roachford's Cuddly Toy to Heatwave's gorgeous ballad Always and Forever. Knight's memory and taste are impeccable - it's nothing but a joy to hear Junior Giscombe's Mama Used to Say or Princess' Say I'm Your Number One again.

If there is a criticism of this album - which is certainly a record you'd be enormously hard-pressed to dislike - it's that Knight doesn't always find it easy to impose her personality on these well-known tracks. On the great Apparently Nothin' - and despite an excellent rap break - she doesn't add anything particular to the Young Disciples original. But when the arrangements and the vocals are given a touch of freshness, as in the Motown'ed-up cover of Cuddly Toy, Knight's version breathes and her versatility is given room to roam. More of that (and a cover of Linx's awesome Intuition) would have been nice here, but this is a good record.

--David Quantick

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Clare on 12 Jun. 2012
Format: Audio CD
I have followed Beverley Knight for years. Her albums - I feel - never really portrayed the soul and emotion of her live performances. I was lucky to see her on Jools many many years ago singing an old Sam Cooke track and I cried throughout. I loved her Motown album and, if you don't own it, rectify that now. It's not just about her - the whole crew of musicians.. Same here on this soul covers album. But, jeees, does Beverley give this 120%!! I have played this album so many times and still, in my car on the way home tonight, I cried. Cuddly Toy: streaming tears. She puts so much feeling and meaning into every track. You feel the words hit your chest. She wants you to feel how good this music is, and she wants to tell you - yes, you - that she is singing to you. So much passion in her voice. And unbelievable vocal control. Someone in the accompanying DVD says that about her - her amazing vocal control. This album is such a steal because, not only do you get a fantastic album you will play till the grooves run dry, you get a live concert of the album played to an audience that includes the original artists. Beverley is in flames in that concert. Scorching. I cried through most of it because it was so uplifting, outstanding and beautiful to listen to and watch. That rising note in Fairplay: if it doesn't make every hair on your body stand to attention, you don't get it. This lady is an outstanding performer inside and outside the studio. And looks stunning too. As a fellow woman, I slightly resent that(!):). But I know she has worked damn hard for her craft. I think I probably sound rather evangelical about this album, but it really is that good. When music makes you cry, you know you are connected with the world in a good way. Beverley makes me cry because her passion for the music is pure.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
Beverley Knight is one of the strongest artists on the UK urban scene, having 6 reasonably successful studio albums of her own material under her belt. At this point of her career, she has now chosen to release "Soul UK", which includes 13 soulful renditions of 80's and 90's UK soul classics. Although a few of the song choices may be a surprise as some of the original artists had bigger hits with other songs, the tracks are interpreted and arranged in a way that enables the chosen tunes to co-exist well with each other and to blend together. Therefore, the album is generally quite good.

However, there are a few of the songs that pale in comparison to the originals. Jamiroquais' "When You Gonna Learn" loses its authenticity here as it is watered down into a mellow jazzy number, which makes it a little forgettable. On this song, as well as on "Always And Forever" and "Round And Around", Beverley's voice does not really shine through. Unfortunately, she does not seem able to effectively put her stamp on these particular tracks.

Nevertheless, there are some fantastic tracks and song choices. "Fairplay" by Soul II Soul is a great cover version and very soulful as is the smooth sounding "Apparently Nothin'". "Cuddly Toy" by Roachford is probably the most energetic and exciting song here where Beverley does really well to connect with it and actually manages to revive it. "Damn" by Lewis Taylor may be least known of the songs, but is well interpreted by Miss Knight. The last song, "One More Try", a cover of George Michael's hit single is also very nicely done.
Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
This is a phenomenal album. Knight covers some fantastic old school British R'n'B classics that to be honest, a lot of us would have forgotten. Round and Round by Jackie Graham is made to sound like an original song, and her cover of Cuddly Toy by Roachford (what happened to him), makes it sound like a Motown Classic rather than the rocky number it was originally intended to be. She also covers the wonderful Lewis Taylor, with her version of 'Damn'. I was hoping when Robbie Williams covered 'Lovelight' it would make people take notice of Lewis. Let's hope Knight succeeds where Robbie failed.
Beverley Knight deserves to be a bigger star than she is, but if she was to become a mega star there would always be the fear that she'd be persuaded to record the bigger, syrupy, American style ballads favoured by Whitney, Mariah and more lately, the X-Factor types. By remaining just above the radar she can continue making quality albums like this, taking many of us back to our youth.
A great album if you want something jolly to listen to as you're driving, or equally to relax to with a glass of wine after a long day.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By The Wolf TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 17 July 2011
Format: Audio CD
Beverley Knight is a National Treasure. 'Soul UK' is a covers album
but this need not trouble us. Ms Knight has a helluva voice and
the kind of secure yet relaxed performance style which carries the
project through with convincing, energetic and charismatic elan.

Remember Freez? Listen to her take on their 1981 hit 'Southern Freez'
if you need convincing. The spirit of the original is wholly intact but
Ms Knight's affectionate reinvention gives it new blood and a joyous pulse.
No less so her rendition of Junior's 'Mamma Used To Say', propelled
along by some hot backing vocals and even hotter horns. Pure magic.

For soul look no further than the slick arrangement of Stock, Aitken
and Waterman's (for Princess) 'Say I'm Your Number One' (one of SAW's
very finest creations). Ms Knight is incandescent! The song is too!

Rod Temperton's gorgeous 'Always and Forever' (Heatwave - 1977) is another of
the album's solid gold highlights. Ms Knight's measured vibrato and glorious
vocal arabesques are truly magnificent. She makes it sound easy. It isn't!

Final track 'One More Try' (George Michael - 1988) is simply sublime.

A consummate musician; a great singer; a very fine recording. One of her best.

Highly Recommended.
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