Few acts have created their own universe as successfully as Brooklyn-based Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings. Forming in 1996, the band’s quest to create bona-fide funk-soul has long outlived their original critics’ view that the 10-piece band was merely some form of extended pastiche. Using only original instruments from the 60s and 70s and recording in glorious analogue, they eschew any post-modern references and create full-on, joyous grooves which achieve their aim of sounding like they were dug up in some dusty old vinyl shop.
Having cemented their reputation in the UK as being Mark Ronson’s house band and featuring strongly on Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black album, their albums have never quite captured their full force as a live act. Soul Time!, a compilation of singles, B sides and live favourites of the past decade comes pretty close though, and serves as a perfect introduction to the band. Showcasing bandleader Bosco Mann’s soulful writing, Soul Time! scores with its note-perfect emotion and keening brass arrangements. [...]
[...] There is nothing modern about Soul Time!, yet it sounds both refreshing and contemporary. The exceptional musicianship and impeccable vocals may not be to everyone’s taste, but for 40 very happy minutes, you can revel in SJDK’s very discrete world.
By Daryl Easley (BBC Music)