On Soul Power (a Qobuzissime record!), Curtis Harding confirmed that modern soul and groovy R&B suit him well. With his first album in January 2015, this flamboyant outsider came to join a family that already included Aloe Blacc, Mayer Hawthorne, Jamie Lidell, Myron & E, Nicole Willis, Lady and Nick Waterhouse, among others...
A native of Atlanta, a former backing singer for Cee Lo Green and close to Cole Alexander from the Black Lips, Curtis Harding is striking, both for the eclecticism that he has to offer, and for the ease with which he moves from a love ballad to a funky up-tempo work that verges on Southern soul rock. With his Curtis Mayfield, Aloe Blacc and Shuggie Otis-like melodies, this second album is no less groovy, but a little smoother and with a little more by the way of guitar.
Produced by Danger Mouse, Face Your Fear alternates between soul gorged on gospel and more psychedelic ambiances. But despite this vintage atmosphere that brings with a hefty whiff of the seventies, Harding has brought a touch of modernity to make this record an intoxicating cocktail of past and present.
Curtis Harding performing live a few weeks ago at the festival Jazz à la Villette in Paris:
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