CILLA BLACK – “I Only Live To Love You”
That’s the sort of thing I like to hear girls say: but I can’t say this is the sort of music I like to hear them sing. Our Cilla has abandoned the teenage scene and disappeared into the twilight zone of mums, dads, budgies and Sunday Plight at the Palladium.

And this should keep them happy. It is a waltz. A simple song that’s going to be murdered by brassy Berthas at pub concerts throughout the country for the next eighteen months.

Still, let us not mock. Cilla has chosen her audience and knows what to feed them: and perhaps one day she’ll return to the fold.

THE PLATTERS – “Sweet, Sweet Lovin'”
I can remember raving about The Platters when I was a nasty little boy of nine, way back in the dark ages of rock and roll. But the years haven’t taken their toll – they still sound great.

“Sweet, Sweet Lovin'” is as good as anything else on the soul scene these days. It’s go, go, go right from the rocking piano intro, punching new blood into what’s now a pretty tired fashion.

Listen to that excitement which brought them success all those centuries ago. This group knows how to come across with the real McCoy – whoever he is.

BILLIE DAVIS – “Angel Of The Morning”
She’s been out of it a long time, too. But Billie’s back now and as long as she makes beautiful records like this, she’s my angel of morning, noon and night.

It must get her back in the charts. The song is nothing less than a little masterpiece about boy leaving girl. Quiet, powerful lyrics which aren’t sickly in the least, above at first, a tender, gentle backing.

Then the flood gates of emotion burst and Billie sings out her soul on the crest of a surging, over-whelming crescendo. Altogether a tremendous song, brilliant arrangement (by Mike Vickers, late of Manfred Mann) and some of the most moving singing ever.

My words just aren’t enough. Hear the record and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

CREAM – “Disraeli Gears”
It’s usually only singles in the column, but once in a while comes an LP which is a pop landmark. This is one of them. Jack, Eric and Ginger show us how far ahead they are of the rest when it comes to sheer creation.

On “Disraeli Gears”, they give free rein to all their technical brilliance in a set made up of fire, dreams, earthquake, poetry and one of the most appallingly funny traditional airs ever recorded.

This wonder album should have come out months ago – a curse upon the hang-ups which made us wait.

PAUL JONES – “Sons And Lovers”
Paul of the 500 horse-power voice goes to town on a pure five horse-power song. I regret to announce that “Sons And Lovers” won’t make me want to hear it again.

Paul Jones has done so much better than this in the past – a great singer like himself deserves a better fate than I hear he’ll get with “Sons And Lovers.”

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