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Chuck Prophet

No Other Love

San Francisco's Chuck Prophet comes through with Summer sounds 2002

By: Hank Ten

San Francisco's, Chuck Prophet

The new Chuck Prophet album rules. If you've never heard of Prophet, let me explain why you should, and why you should get his new album, No Other Love.

Anyone with a rock and roll sensibility, with a penchant for say,Tom Petty, and a taste for independent, slightly different music, will enjoy this record. The musical influences and styles are varied and wide, but, thanks to Prophet's deep musical experience, the record has a delightful and cohesive Prophet sound throughout.

For those unfamiliar with Prophet, he's a So-Cal transplant, who has made San Francisco's his home for the last 15 years or so. Big in the underground, independent San Francisco music scene (or what's left of it) he's got a great following in the Southeast and abroad in Europe. This new album may well put him over the top and finally get him into the big leagues. But based on radio's big business, corporate rules, he still may not get the air time he deserves.

Prophet's deep and wide musical tastes, his production prowess, and his smart ass irony permeate the new record. A good example of this is, Elouise. This raucous number takes the listener out to California's Central Valley, and you can feel Prophet's smirk when he sings, "Got a condo in Modesto with a heated swimming pool, Talking condo in Modesto with a heated swimming pool." Think CAKE - only more clever, more fun and with a a more far-out, funkier delivery.

Alternately, Prophet shines with emotion and sincerity on tunes like After the Rain,and the title track, No Other Love. The latter is a simple, lovely ballad that showcases Prophet's genuine, rich voice, as well as a lovely string arrangement that includes acoustic guitars, violins(!) and upright bass. Masterful.

Of course, Summertime Thing is the shiniest gem on the record. Some early reviews call it a "classic." It's easy to see why. It's a perfect Summertime song. Glorifying the season of easy living, the instrumentation is fantastic and the lyrics and Prophet's delivery, are super: "Summertime thing, That summer heat's got me feelin' lazy, air is warm, sky is hazy, people gettin' down, gettin' crazy..." There's a touch of Petty, and a splash of Jagger in Prophet's voice, but it's definitely his own deal. Peddle steel, Wurlitzer piano, Chamberlin and Vcorder give it the richest texture of any pop song out there. The instrumental portion at the end with the crickets, ocean, and guitar will ooze summertime out of your speakers. You may even smell the suntan lotion and the heat rising from the pavement.

Another fav off the record: I Bow Down to Every Woman I See.
The title alone makes it a goodie. But, the swinging, stoney instrumentation, supplied by a Roland Rhythm 77, Rhodes piano and synth stings, and effects on CP's voice make it extremely listenable. The cool lyrics, evident throughout the album, continue on this one:
"Chloe was a neighbor girl who walked round in a trance. A lot like Sissy Spackek at that homecoming dance Her father was religious, mother was too. She yearned to be a model. Had issues with food."

Go get this album and slip it on to your suburban stereo, or your summertime beach house, or wherever you are. You'll dig it.

Happy Summer!

Hank Ten



Comments? Send an e-mail to Hank Ten.

Golden-Coast Productions, 2002