From the slinky, Clavinet-peppered opener Just Call Me, you know you’re in good hands here. Memphis singer Toni Green has a rich heritage, from working with legendary producer Willie Mitchell to touring with Isaac Hayes’ travelling show.
Producer Sebastian Danchin recently hooked her up with vocalist/guitarist Arnaud Fradin’s seasoned Nantes-based group Malted Milk, and their smoothly produced, real-deal concoction goes down a treat. Clipped rhythm guitars, Wurlitzer organ and first-class brass are driven by Richard Housset’s notably solid drumming. Green oozes authenticity: nestled amid the original tunes are Tommy Tate’s* I’d Really Like To Know* and the Ann Peebles staple Slipped, Tripped And Fell In Love. Fradin’s snappy lead guitar lines and Al Green-imbued falsetto are truly soulful. It’s when the two step up together, as on Hold Back This Feeling and As Long As I Have You, that the sparks really fly.