First Impressions: Anthony Retreads 70's Soul and Gets To 'The Point'

Monday, December 22, 2008

As 2008 draws to a close, the last albums trickle in ready to make way to squeeze into last minute end-of-year lists. So of course I couldn't forget Anthony Hamilton's newest installment, The Point Of It All which has been a long awaited return from the Southern bred crooner. After the sunny side of 2005's Ain't Nobody Worryin', Anthony retreads familiar territory on The Point Of It All, but he gets a little more Curtis Mayfield, a little more Isley Brothers, a little more short, Anthony has managed to merge all of his influences in Gospel, Soul and Blues into one definitive piece. Not that he hasn't done it before in previous releases, but on The Point Of It All, Anthony transcends into a higher plane and everything on first listen latches onto the soul. The bubbly and scraggly beats of lead single, "Cool" is a swift change of pace for the remainder of the more heavy artillery packed soul. The powerhouse grit of "Soul's On Fire" mixes well with the contrasting sweet honey of "Diamond In The Ruff", and they are no doubt the top tunes. The title track shows off Anthony's dazzling range and the piano plinks of "The Day We Met" recall early melodic 70's soul. Anthony dives into the gut bucket Blues on the Gospel opus of "Prayin' For You/Superman" which switches from Blues club stools to church pews in a single track. Very Ray Charles, if I may be so bold. Everything about The Point Of It All seems effortless, as Anthony didn't have to really do to much to win anybody over. Once you've heard his raw vocal outpouring and the cohesiveness of the tunes, it's evident that Anthony is a natural at what he does. The Point Of It All, might be one of the R&B albums you don't need to surpass this year, it's soul at it's most honest and most engaging.

Rating: 9.0/10
Released: December 16, 2008

Anthony on the Ellen, what a shiny jacket!...the back-up dancers are gettin' down in the background...boy, can he sing!

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