Wednesday, June 02, 2010
Booker T and the M.G.s: Universal Language
Versatile Stax session drummer Willie Hall takes over Al Jackson Jr's chair, with less personality, nearly as economical, & he fits the group better than any other drummer I could think of. There's only one really synthed up cut. Synths show up elsewhere more as flavoring. Generally organ centered with some electric piano. Steve Cropper stretches himself on guitar with some of his finest solos. There are a few nods to the disco dance floor, but otherwise this is a funky Seventies LP, the M.G.s sound updated a bit. All the songs but one are band originals, & there's not a bad or throwaway cut on the LP. "Moto Cross" is one of my favorite M.G.s numbers period. I don't understand why Universal Language is so neglected, never released on CD. Enjoy these six selections.