Barefootsoul – Sonia Dada
Calliope Music 7930185017-2
Yes. Sonia Dada is still around. They are still playing music and
they are better than ever. Their recent release, Barefootsoul,
exactly what the title suggests: subtle, funky soul that for some reason
should be listened to barefoot.
The most obvious soul-component is the vocals, which are presented
in dazzlingly clear falsettos by Paris Delane and Michael Scott. For a band
that has long been a funk/blues outfit, it is an admirable transition into
more subtle melodies and soothing vocals. The bass parts are all subdued and
there are few patches of wailing guitar.
What Sonia Dada has achieved, after consistently missing the mark,
is a chance to prove what they really can do as musicians. "Angel" is a tune
well suited for a Sunday drive in a convertible. It is noticeable because
Barefootsoul can be played both loudly and quietly. It has that
appeal to both cocktail lounges and elevators. Discos, romantics dinners,
Some of the tracks, like "Louise", are a little too droning since the
guitar work is so repetitive but on the whole, the groove keeps my interest.
Admittedly, there is better soul out there. The music falls short of
reaching Mayfield's breadth, but Sonia Dada has tried pretty hard and come
out with a record that will delight their own fans, while managing to push
themselves into a new dimension.