On her second wind Duffy displays an endless breeze of soul.
Duffy lit up the U.K. soul scene and the worldwide mainstream when she rolled out her debut 'Rockferry', now in these dark days and long nights Duffy looks to continue soothing the soul with 'Endlessly', her second album.
It's undoubtedly really hard to follow a classic like 'Rockferry'. The high selling, timeless piece which really awoke old soul for a new generation. Still however Duffy looks to best her greatest work with the help of some new friends, love letter esque songs and a desire to push the envelope.
This album was kicked off and picked up by the single, 'Well, Well, Well'. A more upbeat song that sees Duffy taking a different direction backed by the U.S. hip-hop band The Roots. After providing John Legend with some classic soul the Philadelphia drum and bass guitar group help Duffy maintain her stay in the mainstream. The song also has some great, investigative lyrics on Duffy's quest for chart success she sings, "Highly suspicious, where was I last night/Seek and you shall find/And it goes in my mind, you make me draw the line/I didn’t commit any crime".
'Endlessly' opens with 'My Boy'. A tempting number which takes some getting used to but man is it a grower. See if your a fan of the sound of Duffy's first album you may not like the different direction that is taken on some of this sets tracks. Duffy's sound isn't broke so she doesn't need fixing. Still fear not there is only minor re tweaking on this album as that familiar, traditional Duffy sound still makes an acquaintance on this new disc. With new classics like the testament to the throwback, 'Too Hurt To Dance' and the atmospheric 'Don't Forsake Me' Duffy reinvigorates her debuts success all whilst looking for a new way to aim big.
With 'Keeping My Baby' Duffy stays on the up and up with another joy filled, upbeat, uprising song. Whereas this albums title track is a beautiful, acoustic gem, as vintage and as classic sounding as the accompanying record scratches. Their put in for effect, but the cause of this classic is the syrupy bass line and the sweet as honey vocals and lyrics. This slow but serene tranquility transpires over to the following track 'Breath Away', which gives this album it's second wind. There are guitar licks in the chorus which leave you with a taste of James Bond feeling music for a woman who would be just perfect for singing the next 007 theme.
The Friday night beat driven 'Lovestruck' sounds very different, almost new Katie Melua esque, but still it works. As does the whistle driven 'Girl' which may be more suited for singing in the shower once those more happier summer days come around. The more easy on the ears, 'Hard For The Heart' closes the album, a track so good and fresh it could of found it's way onto Duffy's debut classic. From the first 'Do, do, do' your drawn right into the song and it's bluesy subject matter. Duffy shows that even with the emergence of the great new British singer Rumer she still has something to say, something that's worth us talking about.
So after the sensational success of her first release Duffy stretches her soul to avoid a sophomore slump. With yet another memorable short but sweet 10 track effort Duffy proves she's at one with the classics with great ease. Moving towards top tier status in perfect, timeless timing. TIM DAVID HARVEY.