The Bay Area scene has always had a very unique approach to music – famous in rock, where classics of psych still stand strong – and important in jazz, hillbilly, and just about every other style too! Yet when it comes to soul, there's always something especially nice about the San Francisco approach – a way of creating something fresh and unusual, but without ever overstating itself too much – music that seems to owe very little to both the east coast, and Detroit – and which doesn't even follow some of the patterns down in LA
! Case in point is the excellent work on this set – a sweet blend of obscure 60s soul singles and mid 70s funk groovers – pulled together in a wonderful examination of the overlooked Loadstone label. The work is totally wonderful – the soul cuts have a quality that really beats so many rare soul collections that maybe sometimes dig too deep – and the funkier 70s cuts open up with lots of currents from jazz and a bit of club, sometimes in modes that echo the sound of the Fantasy Records style of the period, but with a bit more of an indie vibe overall. As usual with Kent Records, the presentation is great – detailed notes, great sound, and 24 massive tracks that include "A Frown On My Face" by Jacqueline Jones, "A Pretty Girl Dressed In Brown" by Eugene Jefferson, "Fading Day" by The Chandeliers, "A Funky Driver On A Funky Bus (part 1)" by Charles Leonard, "Rudy Blue" by Jean Knight, "Indication" by Eddie & Ernie, "Love Bandit (voc)" by Lee Rogers, "Headed For The Streets" by Herman Harper, "You Touched The Inner Part Of Me" by Celeste Hardie, "Just Say A Four Letter Word" by The California Playboys, "Get To Stepping" by The Cals, and "Swimming Partners" by Paula Lamont.