***** An unexpected departure for an
old rocker. The bass player and mainstay in the late Screaming Lord Sutch's backing
Savages, Dangerfield has been a recording artist in his own right since 1964. For decades,
however, new product has been as as infrequent as that of Scott Walker - and this
entirely self-penned release could easily be his last. If so, then it's an unprecedented
epitaph - because Tony is in a soul bag that's as far removed from from the Savages
and his previous solo output as it could be. For over-riding vocal passion, he's on
a par with Winwood, Morrison, Cocker and Cliff Bennett - though traces of Dylan are
discernable in his phrasing - and all twelve selections stand tall as songs per se.
Indeed, without much rearrangement, "Oh Baby You're Through" would fit James Brown
like a glove. Dangerfield's self-restricted scope also extends to reggae on harmonica-led
"Are You The Same Girl" and a touch of Philly-soul in downbeat "I'm Free From Your Spell".
My only criticism - and it's a very subjective one - is that the too-pure tone of
the vibraphone that rears up now and then, lends an aberrant BBC Light Programme edge
to otherwise fiery instrumental passagework on an album that justifies totally the words
of John McNally of The Searchers: "You don't have be young to make good records."