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This review is from: How Do You Do (Audio CD)
Mayer Hawthorne's 2009 release 'A Strange Arrangement' was a revelation.
His sophomore album continues his journey into sweet soul territory and it
is clear from his consummate grasp of the genre that he is both a fan as
much as he is a hugely talented composer. These twelve fine songs are a million
miles away from mere pastiche. Mr Hawthorne (nee Andrew Mayer Cohen) has
learned his lessons well at the feet of the masters and knows how to both
spin a good tune and get our fingers snapping and toes tapping in-time too.
He has a splendid voice and a pitch-perfect falsetto (heard to striking
effect on opening track 'I Get To Know You'). He's well up there with Daryl
Hall in his grasp of laid-back soulful exposition. Music for late night lovers!
Other than the just mentioned-cracker there are a feast of other delicious
performances on offer. Standout numbers include the crisp summer shuffle
of 'A Long Time' with its slick backing vocals; the string-infused clap-along
Californian bonhomie of 'Dreaming'; 'You Called Me', with its joyous Motown
horns and beats and the simply beautiful 'You're Not Ready', a song to melt the
hardest heart! Final track 'No Strings' is a model of bright and breezy economy.
'How Do You Do' knows just what to do and does it with style and panache.