Exile on Coldharbour Lane

CD Cover A3

Review by Darren Kerr

45-second excerpt from "Converted" (various formats)

This is music for those for whom the Bible and the bottle come hand in hand. With their organic, reverent gospel underpinned by a lazy back-porch funk with cool techno flourishes, this Brixton outfit is pioneering a movement. People are going to have to jump on this sound, they'll have no choice. It's infectious.

Larry Love's deep, smooth voice guides each song through a landscape of able country guitar, sweet piano, harmonica, jugband bass and throbbing electronics, while the Reverend D. Wayne Love throws in prayers, manifestos and come-ons in an oily voice that sounds like Flavor Flav as a brimstone preacher.

"Speed of the Sound of Loneliness" is a John Prine song given extra bounce without losing that Prine earthiness. "The Old Purple Tin" and "Peace in the Valley" have that classic traditional sound which wouldn't be out of place on the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's Will the Circle Be Unbroken. "Ain't Goin' to Goa," "Hypo Full of Love" and "Converted" explain A3's own unique religious agenda.

Play this disc for that sweetheart from church to give her that subtle hint that you've ulterior motives. You might even get some leg.

(Be warned, however, the 'Remix Bonus CD' included in the package crushes the vibe with a fatal overdose of rave. It is fucking bollocks.)

First published in Drop-D Magazine on February 8, 1998

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