Reviews:

There’s not much biographical information available on vocalist Craig King, but from what’s here it sounds as if he’s what they used to call “the real deal”–a genuine, dyed-in-the-wool soul man with equal dollops of church and street in his delivery and a knack for melding old-school deep soul classicism with enough contemporary touches(sexy vibrato, melisma, a nasal edge-of-sneer croon) for him to avoid the “museum-piece” label.

The songs themselves- mostly credited to producer Mike Sweeney- are, for the most point, devoid of cliche, and the arrangements are meaty and,again, agreeably retro (i.e., all “live” instruments) without sounding dated (special kudos to beef-and-brawn sax man Robbie Klein). King is a guitarist as well as a vocalist, but since no song-by-song credits are given it’s impossible to know whether the unembellished, cut-to-the-bone solos here are his,Steve Delach’s, or Dave Avery’s. As usual, the true test of a singer’s mettle is on ballads, and King passes with aplomb- his delivery on the cheating song How Deep Does This go is infused with anguish and longing; So Much In Love, one of the three songs King penned himself, is an ode to devotion in the contemporary southern soul mold, and King summons an effectively callow-sounding emotional vulnerability to heighten the mood.

In a fairer world, there would be a place on the R&B and pop charts for an artist like Craig King, whose good humored delivery on the funk-powered Feelin’ Like A New 45 both acknowledges and transcends the irony of a singer working in what was once a singles market now living or dying on the strength of what was once called an album. As it is, if justice is served he’ll probably have to be satisfied with robust CD sales and a healthy touring schedule. Not the worst of fates, and it couldn’t happen to a more deserving artist.

– David Whiteis. Living Blues / October 2007.

 

This fine release from Bonedog Records once again hits the right chords for Soul music like real Memphis-styled
horns, Staxy-rhythm, greasy organ, soulful vocals. Folks, it never gets old and the formula works for newcomer Craig King who reminds me of the underappreciated Earl Thomas. King’s a yearning singer who doesn’t oversing- proven on the fabulous 60s-style ballad “So Much In Love”, a cut that has that lift-up-your-lighter and sway your arms feel. The bluesy “How Deep Does This Go” gives you more of the same. A great horn arrangement pushes the loose n’ funky title cut, detailing a man’s inability to connect with his woman. King sings “Next to me/In this bed where we lay/Sometimes it seems a million miles away/Tell me where do you go to?”. Ah yes, the mercurial nature of relationships. The moody “This Wasn’t Right” accurately describes the lure and ache of forbidden fruit. Horns once again propel “A Love Like This”, moving in Staxy style, same goes for the gritty “Feelin’ Like A New 45” and the JB-inspired “What’s Right”. Widening out and perhaps revealing a Van Morrison influence (at least by the writer) “The Blues Come A Knock’in”, a Jazzy number in “Moondance” mode. You could even say there’s a little Elton John heard in the bouncy “Leave Your Love On”, then again where did Sir Elton get his influence? Am I stretching it? Perhaps but all good music today stems from
Southern Soul & Blues and Bonedog Records is a label that uncompromisingly keeps the classic period alive.

-Dylann DeAnna / Blues Critic / 2007



Audio Samples: A Love Like This:

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The Blues Come A Knockin':

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How Deep Does This Go:

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Track Listing:
  1. Breakthrough
  2. A Love Like This
  3. So Much In Love
  4. The Blues Come A Knockin'
  5. Feeling' Like A New 45
  6. How Deep Does This Go
  7. Leave Your Love On
  8. This Wasn't Right
  9. It's What's On The Inside
  10. Am I Rushing You
  11. What's Right
  12. Rollin' Down The Highway