Al Green – Explores Your Mind – Our Shootout Winner from 2014

More Al Green

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Excellent soul sound! It’s tough to find copies of these classic Al Green records that deliver sonically and play reasonably well, but we got a hold of a good one here. Green was right in his prime and a copy like this lets you hear just how wonderful a performer he was. You get all the detail and nuance to his voice and the clean, clear sound lets the horns and rhythm section come through. This copy gives you solid bass, excellent presence and lots of energy. Take Me To The River and Sha-La-La (Make Me Happy) both sound great.  

TRACK LISTING

Side One

Sha-La-La (Make Me Happy) 
Take Me to the River 
God Bless Our Love 
The City
One Nite Stand

Side Two

I’m Hooked on You 
Stay With Me Forever 
Hangin’ On
School Days

AMG  Review

The greatness of Al Green Explores Your Mind comes from a collective effort, including James Mitchell’s dreamlike string arrangements and the always skilled backing vocals of Chalmers & Rhodes. But the biggest draw here is Green’s phrasing and intimate vocals, making the record an extremely strong effort.

By the time of 1974’s Al Green Explores Your Mind, this version of the Memphis sound was the production style for only a handful of artists. Producer Willie Mitchell used a lighter touch for his most famous artist, and it’s all but crafted into the Al Green sound. Despite his skills, Green never falls into mannerism here and gives heartfelt and cogent vocals rooted in intelligence and technique. “Sha-La-La (Make Me Happy),” although lyrically slight, has the artist’s charisma and Mitchell’s pop chops. “Take Me to the River,” with perfect backing from Hi Rhythm and a horn and string arrangement, finds Green at his most persuasive. The last track, “School Days,” has Green longing for a school girlfriend and despite the potentially sappy sentiment, it works like a charm.