Gilley Wiltz ‘Rise of the Sleeping Giant (It’s My Turn)’ (Harmonic Life Entertainment) 5/5

gilley-wiltzA new name to me and a lovely surprise too, an old school soul voice, one that over time will become distinctive and immediately recognisable, real instruments used to create a very modern bassy sound, the first track to prick my ears up is the mid tempo stepper “Who’s That Woman”, very easy on the ear, if you remember my review of the Masta Edge of Soul album then this ain’t that far removed from it in sound and overall quality, “Gotta be the one” is another that seeps into your head, musically like so many others you may have nodded your head too but vocally he makes it, shame he didn’t use real horns, those squeeze box noises will never do. There are two scintillating ballads on here that have had repeated plays “Save The Best Dream For Me” and “A Million And One” are male balladry at its best. [You know what, just to sidetrack for a moment, I keep being pointed in the direction of Will Downing and I don’t understand it, we are supposed to be talking soul music, well it has to be RIP Will, he hasn’t recorded anything remotely soulful in a long time and his latest album is a mishmash of other people’s music, bland, passionless, gutless music usually churned by the middle class and given Simon Cowell’s seal of approval. The sort of drivel you here piped whilst stuck in an elevator.] For your own sake have a listen to Gilley Wiltz and get yourself back on track. Anyway rant over the supreme stepper “I Gotta Know” has filled the record room and I’m happy again, this really does get into your head, those strong dominant vocals over a healthy rhythm, oh yes. “I Gotta Know” ups the pace and develops into a tasty dancer that has 4am at Soul Essence written all over it, as does the more energetic “Love’s Fever” which could have featured on the new Kindred album, yep it’s that good. The album finishes with another dance-floor friendly opus in “Its My Turn”. An excellent album that is getting repeated plays here at home and in the car, go on let Willy into your life you won’t regret it.

Brian Goucher