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Souls Alike
     

Souls Alike

5.0 3
by Bonnie Raitt
 

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More than three decades into a roller-coaster career that's seen her earn multiple Grammy Awards and rack up platinum discs -- and weather plenty of the hard times that are often reflected in her blues-soaked compositions -- Bonnie Raitt still has a few tricks up her sleeve. She pulls out a slew of 'em on this, her 18th studio album, which finds her in close

Overview

More than three decades into a roller-coaster career that's seen her earn multiple Grammy Awards and rack up platinum discs -- and weather plenty of the hard times that are often reflected in her blues-soaked compositions -- Bonnie Raitt still has a few tricks up her sleeve. She pulls out a slew of 'em on this, her 18th studio album, which finds her in close collaboration with a host of fresh talent, in the person of performers and songwriters, that coaxes her away from her comfort zone. Acclaimed singer-songwriter Maia Sharp proves a particularly effective partner for Raitt, contributing several songs, notably the pulsing, angular "Crooked Crown" and the elegiac "I Don't Want Anything to Change." While there's little in the way of 12-bar guitar slinging in evidence on Souls Alike, Raitt seizes upon new sonic tools with her accustomed dexterity, working her smoky growl around the electronic loops of "Deep Water" with a marvelous, Memphis-like murkiness. That Delta city also plays heavily into the irresistible groove of "I Will Not Be Broken," while the deeper South permeates the second-line shuffle "Two Lights in the Nighttime." Raitt produced the album herself -- with the help of minimalist soundscaper Tchad Blake -- and she imparts a vibe that's affably raw without being grating. Warmly emotive and strongly involving, this is the kind of album that makes the listener feel a connection -- feel as if we really are Souls Alike.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Souls Alike is the first album in Bonnie Raitt's 18-disc catalog to bear her own name as producer with some assistance from Tchad Blake. It is also the first album in her career absent a 12-bar blues. Gone are the big washes of sound that Don Was added to her Grammy-winning recordings, and the sound Raitt has chosen for herself is a bit edgier, far more adventurous than Silver Lining, her last studio offering produced by Blake. Guitars -- courtesy of the artist and George Marinelli -- dominate, and are accented by Jon Cleary's Hammond B3, which paints the entire proceeding with a solid, somewhat funky yet outsider soul feel. Raitt keeps everything close to the vest this time out. Her road band and a handful of guests who include Mitchell Froom, Maia Sharp, David Batteau, and Sweet Pea Atkinson carried this project to fruition. What's most remarkable about Souls Alike is its songs and their focus on broken love, acceptance of responsibility, and the willingness to transcend. Cleary, Sharp, and Batteau wrote a number of tracks, as did John Capek, who provides drum loops on some cuts. It's all in the family for the most part. The songs themselves reflect on self-determination (the gorgeous title cut) in Raitt's trademark rock ballad style, Randall Bramblett's greasy, dark and slinky "God Was in the Water," the angular, ultra-modern "Crooked Crown," the grimy New Orleans second-line groove of Cleary's "Unnecessary Mercenary" with a killer slide break by Raitt and an off-the-rails piano by Cleary. Then there's the near-trip-hop of "Deep Water," a deeply sensual tune that is a shock on first listen but infectious thereafter. "The Bed I Made," by Sharp and Batteau is the album's closer. With a shimmery loop and Raitt's finest vocal on the set, it's a faux jazz-ballad that is unsettling, full of bittersweet regret and the willingness to embrace the face in the mirror and the mistakes as a way of moving through pain. It's a rather unsettling way to end an album, but then, this entire disc is brave and sharp. It marks a new turn for Raitt and offers her and her fans an entirely new road to go down -- this one deep into the heart.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/13/2005
Label:
Capitol
UPC:
0724347362828
catalogNumber:
73628

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Bonnie Raitt   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Vocals,Slide Guitar
John Capek   Loops
David Batteau   Synthesizer Guitar
Sweet Pea Atkinson   Background Vocals
Jon Cleary   Guitar,Piano,Rhythm Guitar,Hammond Organ,Background Vocals,Wurlitzer,Hammond B3
Ricky Fataar   Percussion,Drums
Mitchell Froom   Keyboards,Hammond Organ,fender rhodes,Wurlitzer,Mini Moog,Dolceola
James "Hutch" Hutchinson   Bass,Bass Guitar
George Marinelli   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
Maia Sharp   Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Background Vocals
Arnold McCuller   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Marc Jordan   Composer
Bonnie Raitt   Producer,Audio Production
John Capek   Composer
David Batteau   Composer
Lee Clayton   Composer
Pat McLaughlin   Composer
Tchad Blake   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Randall Bramblett   Composer
Davis Causey   Composer
Jon Cleary   Composer
Mitchell Froom   Orchestration
Gordon Kennedy   Composer
Wayne Kirkpatrick   Composer
George Marinelli   Composer
Michael Rodriguez   Engineer
Maia Sharp   Composer
Tommy Sims   Composer
Pete Wasner   Composer
Norman Moore   Art Direction
Tony Arata   Composer
David Boucher   Engineer
Emory Joseph   Composer
Liz Rose   Composer

Customer Reviews

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Souls Alike 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Bonnie Raitt redefines herself on this her 18th collection yet she gives listeners a great musical ride from start to finish. This cd is so full of energy and pure talents from all involved. I was surprised by some of these songs, Bonnie continues to expand her musical directions without alienating her true fan base and she does a tremendous job producing her first collection of tunes. The songwriters shine on this effort, especially, and Bonnie, one of the best pure interpreters coming out of the 70's singer/songwriter heyday takes each song she's chosen and gives them a heart and soul and some of her best funky grooves I've ever heard from her.(just listen to the groove and slide guitar textures on "Two lights in the night time". Jon Cleary continues to amaze with his songwriting and New Orleans meets Little Feat funky attitude("Love on one condition", "Unnecessarily Mercenary", and helps Bonnie craft a real groove to these awsome songs. With her great taste in finding the right words that reflect her life, shes contributed to another great total band effort and these songs should fill the intimate rooms she'll tour in over the months ahead. You would never know that Bonnie is well into her 50's but that is why shes a Rock & Roll Hall of Famer and 9 time Grammy winner. She knows no limitations or boundries and blends into so many styles of music effortlessly. One listen to "God was in the water" as well as "I will not be broken" & "Deep water",(can't help but think listening to the words, of the Hurricane tragedy) and a positve reflection of strength Bonnie sings about in her first single, and best song for radio since "Something to talk about", "I will not be broken". Bonnie's been through some soul searching these days with the death of her parents(over the past year) so through her pain, like the making of her "Nick of Time" cd, she has channeled these songs into real life experiences that listeners will relate to and want to hear. The real treats on "Souls alike" are the eye opening performances Bonnie gives on the loop hoppy "Deep Water" and the Maia Sharp penned "Crooked Crown", a whole different Bonnie Raitt, and especially "God was in the water" which Bonnie really stretches on and gives the cd such depth, edge and originallity, all this without having to be a blues diva, instead she infuses these tunes with her bluesy funk strut and slide guitar masterworks and puts a modern spin to the music that all ages will appreciate. With some of her most soulful singing of her career with "So Close", "Trinkets", "I don't want anything to change" and the classy closer(jazz tinged) "The bed I made", Bonnie has fashioned a real musical gem of a record and should position her right back in the forefront of talented women singer/musicans into the 21st century.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'll keep it simple, Bonnie has given the musical world another gem, her most musical varied collection ever, still manages to give us some beauty with her slower ones and some kick butt New Orleans stomps, and most impressive some grooves on Souls Alike that don't quit. Her opening song with its familiar Bonnie sounds is a classic song of strength, a true pick yourself up when your down(its haunting in the Katrina aftermath, as is the second cut "God was in the water". The trip hop electronica jewel "Deep Water","Crooked Crown" is at first a bit of a shock but they grow on you and the songs just keep building, what a band bonnie has around her. "The bed I made" is also an excellent piece of music, very different(jazz toned,modern look at adult disfunctional relations) but sung by a grammy pro, who knows how to get under your skin, just listen to "Trinkets", this Emory Joseph classic song of childhood memories is just pure magic for Bonnie, such a groove and lyrics, ALL THESE SONGS on Souls Alike are moving, full of soul ("So Close", just grows on you, "I don' want to change a thing" another beautifully sung Raitt, this has impressed me and surprised me and most important it challenges adults who love music and have become so use to the same old music, this is Bonnie at her very best! Jon Cleary, has made the most impact on Bonnie over the years, he has given Bonnie some great New Orleans sounds and a keyboard player like no other, this guy is a knockout addition to Bonnie's sound.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The other reviewers who gave this CD five stars said it more eloquently than I could. I've only listened to the CD twice, and can't get enough of it. I have always liked Bonnie Raitt's blend of defiance and vulnerability, but her ability to infuse a song with intelligence and emotion is unmistakable here. Listening to her take on songs that she probably wouldn't have gone near ten years ago was jarring at first, but on a second hearing, I'm glad that she took the chance!