Thursday, November 20, 2003

Review - I Can't Stop

Artist: Al Green

Posted on Thu, Nov 20, 2003 at 4:00 AM

I Can't Stop
Label: Blue Note
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: I Can't Stop

Good recipes don't always make for good food, and "I Can't Stop" is frustrating evidence to that very point. The re-teaming of Al Green and Willie Mitchell should have resulted in a soul album that set a new standard in the New Album By Old Legends category. Sadly though, the gritty fire that defined Hi Records back in the '70s is long extinguished, and though the Reverend's voice is still as rich as ever, the glossy sheen that Mitchell shellacs over the arrangements here is appalling. Despite a clear attempt to make a record that evoked their heyday without referencing it directly, "I Can't Stop" ultimately leans too heavily on decisions by Green and Mitchell to "update" their sound with modern recording techniques and maudlin songwriting. The result is uncomfortably slick, salvaged only by the fact that, well, it's Al Green singing.

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