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|Artist||Mighty Sam McClain|
2021 Stereophile Magazine Record to Die For!
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Mighty Sam is a rhythm and blues legend who shook up the blues world with this 1993 release. The great torch bearer of deep soul is caught in top form on this classic album. And now, this gatefold 2LP 45 RPM edition presented by Analogue Productions makes the album even greater!
The four sides of wider-spaced grooves make for reduced distortion and better high frequency reproduction. It's a 200-gram masterpiece from Quality Record Pressings, a state-of-the-art LP pressing plant. And the gatefold jacket is hard-core, old-school style - thick cardboard, tip-on, with additional photos and liner notes inside. Sweet.
Give It Up To Love is the R&B comeback of the year.
Mighty Sam McClain's Give It Up To Love is one of the great soul records.
McClain sings soul with incredible power - he knows when to pull the punches and when to cool it down. 'Give It Up to Love,' the title track, acknowledges his gospel roots; he performs it as a vocal prayer to God asking for wisdom, love, and strength. Bruce Katz's contributions on B-3 Hammond organ expands McClain's sound, particularly on the 'Green Onions'-influenced 'What You Want Me to Do.' The sparsely effective arrangement on 'Here I Go Falling in Love Again' brings McClain up front as he cries of being a soul stripped to the bare bones. Kevin Barry's funky bass blows while McClain declares himself as a child of God in 'Child of the Mighty Mighty.'
Give It Up To Love has been one of my all-time faves since its release in 1993. Producer Joe Harley correctly identified red-clay R&B vocalist Sam McClain as someone whose musical career was due for a new act. The album continues to be an audiophile go-to; this latest issue by Analogue Productions generously spaces out 11 tracks over two 45rpm LPs. The sound was already standard-setting, whatever the format, thanks to engineer Michael C. Ross's superb 'get.' I can pretty much tell within moments how my system is sounding by hearing a few beats of Mighty Sam's vocals and listening to guitarist Kevin Barry sliding over the frets at the top of 'What You Want Me to Do.'