Black Ivory | Continuum

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Urban/R&B: Contemporary urban Urban/R&B: Rhythm & Blues Moods: Type: Vocal
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Continuum

by Black Ivory

For the first time in close to thirty years, the original members of the Classic Soul trio Black Ivory work their magic in the studio delivering eleven captivating, infectious and imaginative new songs.
Genre: Urban/R&B: Contemporary urban
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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1. Like Fallin'
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6:38 $0.99
2. Lucky Tonight
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4:04 $0.99
3. The Move
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3:43 $0.99
4. Don't Need No Rehab
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5:30 $0.99
5. He Said She Said
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4:39 $0.99
6. Win At Love
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4:03 $0.99
7. Ghost
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5:25 $0.99
8. Lookin' for Love
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4:41 $0.99
9. Get Down
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4:52 $0.99
10. Back Home
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4:45 $0.99
11. I Just Wanna Live
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4:23 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
This January, TV One premieres a new season of its acclaimed series Unsung, which chronicles the lives and careers of unheralded soul music icons. The 2012 season is a soul music fan's wet dream as it features the likes of Freddie Jackson, Bobby Womack and Atlantic Starr, all artists deserving a detailed retrospective. Yet TV One must take note of one of soul music's major events of 2011 for next season: the reunion of Black Ivory.

It's been over three decades since the New York City based-Black Ivory released their last album and in the interim, cult adoration and the collectible value of the trio's classic '70s sweet soul sounds have soared, not to mention the elevation of member Leroy Burgess as the patron saint of the disco sub-genre known as boogie. With such an esteemed reputation, this long-awaited reunion album, which openly embraces updated and current sounds, is a risk yet, on the whole, Continuum succeeds admirably.

Nothing here sounds calculated. It's apparent that time hasn't aged the pristine harmonies of Burgess, Russell Patterson and Stuart Bascombe on refined and oh-so-silky slow opening number "Like Fallin'." The children of the children who might have been conceived as the grooves on an original Today pressing of Don't Turn Around spun around are definitely going to be doing some serious romancing to it. The mellow atmosphere progresses with sensual down-tempo confection "The Move," a showcase for Bascombe's lush falsetto, and even a misfire like the hip-hop-inflected, yet contagious, club bounce of "Lucky Tonight" glides effortlessly.
"Don't Need No Rehab" is seminal vintage boogie comparable to Burgess' esteemed 1980's output and if Larry Levan's in heaven you know he's got to be working on a re-mix. The quality doesn't stop on the bouncy groove of "He Said She Said," the sugary soul treat of "Win At Love" and the up-tempo club aura of "Get Down." The slow, domestic yearning of "Back Home" has particular relevance: its aching desire for domesticity in a music industry where touring has become an artist's bread and butter is quite poignant.


Continuum ultimately lives up to its title and should leave long-time fans satisfied and new converts wanting more.-Matt Bauer



(SRL)
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SoulandJazzandFunk Sunday, February 05 2012 Bill Buckley

In the early 2000s that duo teamed up again with Bascombe and Black Ivory were reborn. They performed regularly and recorded sporadically... and 'Continuum' is their latest release. The 11 tracker is slick and polished and for an indie soul set, production values are high. The songs are all originals and throughout the harmonies are superb... testament to the group's experience, longevity and familiarity with what each member can offer.

The best cuts on the LP are the ballads and the mid-tempo items with the soft soul slowie 'Back Home' taking you right back to the group's 70s heyday. Best of the mid-tempo items is the opener, 'Like Falling'. It's sweet and gentle ... proper, mature, uptown soul if you would. 'Lucky Tonight' and 'The Move' offer more of the same – sophisticated and never too forced. Dancers will probably go for 'Don't Need No Rehab'. The tight beats are a reminder of Burgess' house days though there's a pleasing restraint about matters. 'He Said She Said 'is a play to the steppers' market... but maybe it's just a little too laid back to get through. Equally Burgess' 'Ghost' is just a tad too experimental while Bascombe's 'Looking For Love' also lacks real focus. Still, good to know that veterans like Black Ivory are still out there daring to record new material rather than live on past successes.

(BB) 4/5
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Some 40 years ago (damn! has it been that long?), I added, BLACK IVORY as one of the groups I came to enjoy in style and substance. "I'll Find Away" is among my all-time favorites of 'ALL' of the songs I like to listen to even today. The 'Industry' can be cruel to recording artists and thus, cruel to the fans of recording artists. They set their own criteria for what they are willing to support, I suppose, based on a bigger picture. I'm being kind. They kick to the curb what 'they' don't want or think is viable to their business 'objectives'. We have seen it repeatedly.So BLACK IVORY was yet another casualty of this 'process'. But NOW....

"CONTINUUM by BLACK IVORY" has come into being. A 'reunion' of sorts of the three young men, Stuart Bascombe, Leroy Burgess and Russell Paterson we embraced some 40 years ago. They have come a long way from, "Don't Turn Around", but in many ways, this album is reminiscent of the style of vocals and harmony that their followers and fans were drawn to.

TRACK LIST....
Like Fallin'
Lucky Tonight
Don't Need No Rehab
He Said, She Said
Win At Love
Ghost
Lookin' For Love
Get Down
Back Home
O Just Wanna Live.

As I am prone to do when 'The Juice' asks me to do a review on an album, I stick it in the car for a few days. When I'm 'impressed', I take it out of the car and put it in my CD tray in the computer while I 'go about my domestics'. This is what happened with this album. In part because I always liked Black Ivory, but mostly because I liked the songs and the singing. We don't get to hear so much 'group harmony' as we did back in the day and "I" will always gravitate to that. In the 'tradition' that is Black Ivory, there are colorful vocals, applying some 'studio razzle dazzle' with overdubs of expanded vocals with counterpoint and fuller harmony structure. It's 'easy on the ears'.

It would appear that even though they weren't 'on the scene', they were still being creative. Some of these songs sound as though they had been written and arranged a little while back. This isn't a bad thing. The 'focus' is on the group. The music and the arrangements are 'supposed' to be in support of the 'group'. It's there'.

Some classic artists try to sound 'contemporary' with sounds that their fans may not appreciate and the 'young-uns' aren't even going to listen to. Aside from a short 'rap' portion in, "Lucky Tonight", the men have stuck to their 'vocalist guns' and the musical standards that their fans will accept, appreciate and maintain the identity they established that made them
popular.

They were best known for their 'Slow Jams', but they did a good mix in of up tempo dance tunes. I like the 'kick' in "Don't Need No Rehab" and "Get Down". Along with those are some more 'moderate tempos' that groove along nicely, and at the forefront, Black Ivory harmony.

There is a sort of 'campy/novelty' song in "Lookin' For Love" that talks about a 'blue dress' that was in the news some 15+ years ago. Just thought I'd mention it.

If there is a song that might be considered 'traditional Black Ivory', it is 'Back Home'. I tend to 'look' for that thread to origins when I listen to classic artists. This tune did it for me. I could of course relate to the story as it is about an artist who was on tour for a while and was eager to get back to his woman. But more than that, it is Black Ivory as we remember them some 40 years ago (damn! Has it been that long?)

"CONTINUUM by BLACK IVORY" is an album that the fans of Black Ivory will find a nice refreshment of a familiar sound. Putting aside the fact that we have become accustom to the 'canned drum sounds', and some of these tracks would have been fatter with a 'live' drummer, "CONTINUUM" doesn't go far astray from what we appreciated in BLACK IVORY. Strong lead vocals and lush background vocals sit well out in front, reminding us of what 'Vocal Groups' was all about.

Now...I have some 'runs' to make and I am putting CONTINUUM back in the car. I still love good vocals!

--Earl Gregory

Black Ivory - Continuum



Reviews


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Candice Wellman

Continuing to Love the music of Black Ivory...
This is one of my favorite Black Ivory CDs... So happy to hear such soulful music..lovin it!