Amy Winehouse – Back to Black (LP of the Week)

I am a little behind with album of the week entries as I am for quality over quantity. Okay, and I am a bit slow. However it is definitely not for lack of music. On with the show.

This weeks album of the week is one that has been out for a while, and yet it took me quite a while to actually listen to the entire album. It is a slight departure from the last two weeks of R&B releases, but has similarities.

So, as you probably read by now, it is Amy Winehouse’s second album, Back to Black. It starts of with the song everyone who listens to music, or hears popular music knows, “Rehab”. As everyone knows this one, there is no need to discuss.

The second track, “You Know I’m No Good”, is what starts to give a feel for the album. This track, as with the album, has a vintage quality to it. It is especially true on the following track, “Me & Mr Jones”, this track could easily fit in with soul/R&B from the 60s.

One of the album highlights for me is “Tears Dry on Their Own”. It contains a sample interpolation of “Ain’t no Mountain High Enough”. The Winehouse track, which is written by her, along with Nickolas Ashford, Valerie Simpson, is a mid tempo track that feels positive and optimistic. Definitely in the vein of “Ain’t no Mountain High Enough”. The Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell track is a classic, however Amy Winehouse differentiates herself well enough that the average listener would not realise the sample interpolation being used (myself included initially!)  (to add a shameless plug for my baseball blog, the Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell video for “Ain’t no Mountain High Enough” was shot at Expo 67 in Montreal, what is believed to be the greatest World’s Fair. Anyway, the Montreal Expos baseball team was named after the event, and the baseball team is the main focus of my blog, Baseball 363).

Back to Black is only 11 tracks long, clocking in just under 35 minutes, however, it is definitely an album that can be thought of as all quality.