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Fountains of Wayne. Welcome Interstate Managers. Virgin

Fountains of Wayne explore new musical territory on Welcome Interstate Managers, the group’s third album, while keeping the smart writing and tight arrangements. On the witty “Stacy’s Mom”, lead singer Chris Collingwood confesses his love for a school friend’s mother. Ever heard 70’s-style balladry with a lead rock guitar? Both are in “Halley’s Waitress,” punning off the comet while waiting for a waitress. Robert Randolph’s steel guitar on “Hung Up On You” adds a classic country spirit and hooks like “Ever since you hung up on me, I’ve been hung up on you” well illustrate the band’s off-beat humor. –JC

Luther Vandross. Dance With My Father. J Records

Luther Vandross has called Dance With My Father his career record. It just might be, with Luther digging deep into the oft-complicated scenario of falling in love with a friend on opener “If I Didn’t Know Better.” The funk-tinged “Hit It Again” has Luther talking sex with Queen Latifah and declaring, “Two time lovin’ makes me smile, one time love just ain’t my style.” A remake of “The Closer I Get To You” combines the vocal brilliance of Luther and Beyonce Knowles gliding across the sparse background, sparing vocal acrobatics for a smooth groove. The title track reveals deep-seated emotions and memories about not only the death of his father (Luther was 7), but the devastating effects that death had on his mother. -JC / Issue 32 - September 2018
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