Hannah Williams & The Affirmations – Music News

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Record Kicks (label)

18 October 2019 (released)

2 d


In a musical soundscape coated in derivative modern R&B and Hip-Hop it is a real pleasure to find an album of first class soul and from a Bristolian at that.

Hannah Williams was famously sampled by Jay Z on his ‘4:44’ track ‘Late Nights & Heartbreak’ and with this album it is easy to see just what she is capable of.

Whether its an all out soul attack on the title track or the acapella intro to ‘What Can We Do?’ her voice is a remarkable weapon – full of confidence and brio but sensitive enough to carry some deep emotion.

I was pleasantly surprised to hear such a positive album and one so full of respect for the classic soul and funk forms but it is also something that is uniquely something of Ms Williams own brand.

Track after track pour out of the speakers with elements of Motown, Atlantic soul, Stax R&B and psychedelic funk embedded in their DNA. The playing throughout is of a terrific standard and I found myself wondering where she had found such superb musicians. Adam Newton’s bass was particularly fine and James Graham’s keyboards lay some superb textures and detail. The horn section – a real horn section and not samples – give the album a real power, punctuating tracks like ‘Tablecloth’ while Adam Holgate’s guitar on the same track is emotive and deep.

An album I found myself playing through more than a few times for the sheer pleasure of hearing some really fine soul music, this deserves to be up there in the end of year charts.
Simply excellent.



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