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The Spotify Playlist

The Spotify Playlist: Frozen Love Brings Soul To Your Friday
The Quietus , October 8th, 2010 11:25

He's a 1930s butcher! Our good friend Tony Sylvester may be 20% hardcore warrior, 30% English gent and 50% tattoos but he's a total soul machine underneath it all. Thanks to the lovely Julie Weir for technical help

Tony Sylvester runs soul night Frozen Love. Details below. Listen to his Spotify playlist here.

Of all the music I love, the one I'm always least eager to debate or discuss is soul. My appreciation goes back almost as long as I can remember - from the highlights of those cheap 'Hits of the 60s' compilations that seemed to be always on in my house to a full on immersion via a skinhead older sister, its presence was just there - out of context, out of time, and immune to the shifting tastes or whims of then moody adolescent flying through cultures and subcultures as fast as their eager mind could process them.

My love for it is entirely physical and emotional, my response to it almost involuntary - the only real goosebump raising I get these days in my cynical early middle age. Whilst I'll grump and huffaw about pretty much anything under the sun, stick on a Darrell Banks single on Revilot and I'll beam like a contented toddler.

Maybe it's for the chosen format that does it: The black vinyl jukebox 45 still holds an almost magical hold over me. Loud, glossy and succinct, I don't think it can be beat. Its benefits are elevated if you spend as much time as I do trawling youtube and blogspots searching for unheard or half remembered gems in their compressed, relatively lifeless glory, only for their full majesty to reveal themselves revolving on a proper record player at a later stage.

I have a particular weakness for 'dancers' (from R&B 'tittyshakers' to full tempo Northern barnstormers) and midpaced Rhythm & Soul 'weepers'. If a gun was pointed at my temple for an immediate answer to the ultimate poser: What's your favourite song, it would be hard for me to come up with anything quicker than Jimmy Norman's sublime 'This I Beg Of You' or Barbara Lynn's ultimate slice of Southern melancholia 'You Left The Water Runnin''. Yes, it's even better than Otis Redding's version.

The beauty of collecting Soul 7"s is an almost endless scope for discovery and rediscovery coupled with the humility it brings you, both of constantly being in the presence of such cruelly overlooked talent, and the realisation that despite an evergrowing collection, it'll never be anything near definitive. Whilst collecting other genres often feels like filling in the gaps or preserving the oddities, there's no rhyme or reason to the quality of genuinely incredible records that time, lack of distribution or whim has left relatively unheard.

Playing these records loudly in public is really the best way to appreciate them - they're supposed to be danced to. That's their sole purpose. I've tried my best here to trawl the rather limited scope of Spotify to bring you some songs I definitely enjoy hearing properly as their makers intended. If you wanna hear them how I like to hear them, then please come down. I'll have a Woodford's Reserve. And if you have a copy of Lou Lawton's 'Nick Nack Paddywack' on Wand Records, feel free to bring it with you. I have money!

Next fixtures:

09/10: FROZEN LOVE @ The Landseer, 37 Landseer Road, London
16/10: BEAR YOUR SOUL Vs FROZEN LOVE @ Vogue Fabrics, 66 Stoke Newington Rd, London
23/10: FROZEN LOVE @ Supersonic Festival, Birmingham
24/10: FROZEN LOVE @ Supersonic Festival, Birmingham
30/10: FROZEN LOVE @ Rosemary's Baby Shower, The Landseer, 37 Landseer Road London

Contact: for more details.


John and Tony say, 'Listen to soul music!'