Albums by Soul artists in the 60's had usually comprised a couple of hit singles and some covers of popular songs. That all changed with Isaac Hayes "Hot Buttered Soul", which ushered in a period where Soul stars claimed the album format and Millie Jackson did it better than most with "Caught Up".
This follow up certainly had much to live up to, and does so in remakable style. Without changing the basic concept, Millie breathes new life into it. This could be a stand alone album, equally it could be considered a continuation.
Starting with the wife's story, the album opens with "Lovin' Arms". Loneliness and regret pour from the vocal, as it does on "Making the Best Of a Bad Situation" despite the reappearance of her husband. These 2 tracks, and the rap that links them are , for me, among the finest Ms Jackson has ever recorded. Things soon turn to angerand defiance on "Memory of a Wife" before an ultimatum on "Tell Her It's Over".
Millie switches seemlessly to the other womans story for what would have been side 2 on the original vinyl release. "Do What Makes You Satisfied", a slow burner, opens with resignation the order of the day. We then move through anger on "You Can't Stand...", before the arrival of the wife fuels an incendiary "Leftover". By the close though, things descend into breakdown on "I Still Love You". The reality of the path of lost love has seldom been better captured.
Throughout, the emotions on display - and displayed they are - will be familiar to anyone who has been in this situation from any perspective. Together with "Caught Up" it captures a moment of an artist at the very peak of her trade, telling a timeless story. This is a real SOUL album, buy it if you value music with real emotion.