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4.5 out of 5 stars39
4.5 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 June 2014
This album does sound very good on CD - the production is immaculate on every track and the musicianship is of a very high standard. I tried the MP3 version, given as a free download, but the CD reveals a lot more detail and has much more depth of sound.

The band are incredibly tight as usual and there is a good team of vocalists - I also enjoyed the horn arrangements and Nigel Hitchcock's alto solos are very classy - sounding quite American, if this can be taken as a compliment. Of course what singles out Incognito is the fact that they are British, but have a "transatlantic" sound.

This album has the usual mix of danceable tracks, with elements of Jazz, Funk and Soul. Every track is well-crafted, but for me, there isn't a stand-out tune that grabs you, as there have been on previous albums. Having said that, this album sounds ideally suited to the summer and makes great party music, with funky bass, syncopated horns and some catchy hooks. Not their best, but of a very high standard - just put it on and enjoy the summer!
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on 3 June 2014
I have all their 16 albums but only on CD so I bought the vinyl version as I just wanted to have some Incognito under my needle. The courier has just delivers it about 30mins and so I'm giving side 1 of this 2xLP a quick listen before I go out. I'll say one thing of the vinyl version it truly is a work of art, it's a double gatefold sleeve and it's gorgeous, someone should be selling the cover art as a poster.

I've must say that it's got the Incognito sound but it also has a slight edge to it, as Bluey has brought in some new personnel such as Katie Leone who's vocals are simply divine. I will say this which might upset many Incognito fans but I'm so happy Maysa isn't on this album as I felt her guest vocals on the last couple of albums were just not up to the same standard as the other vocalists such as Immani, Tony Momrelle. I will finish this off once I've listened to the rest of the album tonight.
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on 2 June 2014
I have followed Incognito since the beginning and after playing Amplified Soul non stop since receiving the package yesterday, for me this album doesn't go down anywhere near one of their best. Yes, there are some quality tunes to be savoured but with sixteen tracks to play from, the sum doesn't make for a totally satisfying whole. Key tracks which fit the 'killer diller' status are the Stevie-ish Something 'bout July, I Couldn't Love You More, I See The Sun featuring Deborah Bond, and the gorgeous Curtis Mayfield-ish Stop Running Away with Bluey on vocals, totally unrecognisable and a really lovely track. Bubbling under, Silver Shadow is a nice cover, Hands Up If You Wanna Be Loved is a grower and the single Hats (Makes Me Wanna Holler) is a different kind of party song for them I'm still not sure about, yet the video is good to watch and Bluey is very entertaining. The other point for me is there's little of their Jazz Funk instrumental asides with Amplified My Soul Part 2 and Wind Sorceress far too short. I also found the instrumental breaks and soloing in the songs a little too predictable, mainly sax, trombone and trumpet, but one of the big omissions was the flute!! How I love my vibbing . Summer grooves are not the same without your flute in attendance. Also lots of horn stabs but not much stretching/tempo changing like they've done before, and Bluey's musical director, brilliant keys player Matt Cooper had a very low profile time on the sessions I thought. Barely noticed him!!......

AND the one major thing I was hoping Bluey would do which I think would have made such a difference........draft in Simon Hale. His string arrangements are something to behold and always add a very special dimension to the music. Check Mario Biondi's 'Sun' for proof. I bang on enough about Simon Hale when I'm presenting my Soul Trippin' Shows on the Hot FM likening him to the great Claus Ogerman and his work with George Benson.... But I'm being hyper critical I know because this new set of songs are generally good. But I'm not used to just 'GOOD' with an Incognito album. It's always an event for me when the Cogs release a new album and 'SPECIAL' is what you usually find along the way, but the feeling I still get listening to past masterpieces like 'She Wears Black' and 'Stone Cold Heart' prompt the question, 'are you gonna feel the same way about any of these 10/12 years later??'......I don't think I will
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on 14 August 2014
Firstly, I'd like to say that I am a huge fan of the Cog. I like this album a lot and I'm pleased I bought it. But is it as good as some of the earlier albums? It's difficult to say as there have been some absolute crackers in the past... Transatlantic RPM, Tales From The Beach, Adventures In Black Sunshine... The list of great albums is long!

Like most albums, some tracks are stronger than others. My favourite track is probably Amplify My Soul (Part 2). Jamie Anderson's sax solo is quite frankly divine - I absolutely love this track. Rapture is another corker but then again anything Imaani sings is going to be good! Deeper Still is another corker - I thought I was listening to Erykah Badu when I first heard it. Chiara Hunter has a great voice. Something 'bout July is also a good tune. I especially like the Horns arrangement on this track.

In summary, if you like the Cog, you'll like this album - A LOT. Bluey also sings on one of the tracks adding to the huge range of vocal talent who contribute to this album; including Carleen Anderson, Katie Leone and Incognito stalwarts Tony Momrelle and Venessa Haynes.

Personally, I would like the band to release some of the tracks they regularly play live. I'd love to have a recording of Natalie Williams singing Minnie Ripperton's 'Inside My Love'. A recording of Vanessa Haynes singing 'Don't you worry bout a thing' in the format they dropped at the Royal Albert Hall would be nice too. Oh and what about the version of Always There that Imaani performed at the Blue Note in Milan in 2012? AND as they've started playing Parisienne Girl again, maybe it's time to re-record that one again too!

Bluey, perhaps it's time for another remix album mate! Keep up the good work and see you all soon. x
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on 2 June 2014
Incognito back to their absolute best.
I only received this lunchtime today, listened to it all afternoon and honestly can say this album rivals some of the very best ones Cog have done over the last 35 years.
All the tracks are great- personally I love Amplify my Soul, Rapture and Never Known A Love Like This but its really hard to call as this album will appeal to all die hard fans
Bluey has combined good old jazz funk with a mix of soul, swing and jazz plus a heavy dose of funk.
Tony Momrelle features on many of the tracks and his soulful voice adds depth to the music.
There are not enough superlatives for this album.....
Bluey-you're a total genius!!
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on 9 June 2014
I am fairly new to Incognito (the first album I bought was Transatlantic RPM) and this is album is pure class. Its smooth, funky, uplifting, jazzy, soulful and the instrumentation and production is flawless.

If you loved their last album, Surreal, you will be blown away by this one, that's for sure!
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on 17 June 2014
This is a superb album and i,m feeling every song on it!

Top performances from everyone in the band and all the songs are great.For me personally though the stand out track was track 2 featuring the superb vocals of Ms Vanessa Haynes. All the vocalists are superb though.

Hat's is also sure to become a dancefloor filler.

Respect to Mr Sid Guald as well for his flawless horn playing and brass arrangements along with the Maestro Bluey.

One final thing a previous reviewer commented that the vocalists used on this album were better than Maysa who has sang on previous Incognito albums.

I would just say that all the singers who have worked with Incognito are all great in their own right including Maysa and it can be very discouraging for singers to be compared with other singers as though it's some sort of competition.

In a garden there are flowers of many different varieties and in Incognito Bluey chooses singers of all different shades to make the Incognito garden grow.

Maysa your singing is beautiful and thank you!! for enriching our lives with it!!
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on 28 August 2015
Ok, so I've also followed Incognito since their beginning and have always been a huge fan. I'm not a musician and so don't have any musical show- off terminology for you! As far as I'm concerned you have to feel music and with this album let's just say, you feel it. I feel almost disloyal saying what I'm about to say, but, I think that this is some of the best music they have ever produced! I love all of their albums and there's always a favourite on each album. This one is no exception. I See The Sun is my absolute favourite with a nice surprise of a cover of Silver Shadow. Took me to "back in the day". If you like fabulous dance music with a really cool vibe then this is the album for you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I am!
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on 28 June 2014
I Luuuuvvvve the Cogs their brill I've seen them quite a few times first by traveling around the country, but now we have a brill club in Newcastle called the Hoochie Coochie so Ive seen them there a few times, and just recently with Chaka. Ive meet some of the band at some gigs, and I know their not but they feel like friends, their so approachable and open and will stand and talk, not just about music.

Their music is brill and although they've only just released this LP, I'm already looking forward to the next.
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on 2 November 2014
Another classy album from Bluey and his ever changing personnel. Slick, soulful and with more grooves and hooks than you can shake a stick ( or a thang) at. Only missed out on a 5, because they haven't attempted to expand on their well developed palette of sound. Fans new and old, as well the jazz/ funk/ soul curious will love it .
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