11 May 2013 (released)
27 June 2013
The title ‘Amos Got Soul’ could lull you into thinking that you are about to listen to a collection of conventional down tempo R&B or blues tracks. The fact that singer and songwriter Dave Plaehn counts Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin amongst his major influences, coupled with the man’s propensity for the harmonica will only reinforce this train of thought. Fortunately, Plaehn appears to be influenced by so many music genres that you soon realise that this guy is into so much more by the time the first song ‘In My Hair’ starts.
‘Amos Got Soul’ begins with a soft rock song, followed up by a reggae track in ‘Doodle Li’, then a country-esque ditty before moving onto the titular song which is very adult contemporary. This diversity is the philosophy of the album and is indicative of Plaehn’s numerous musical encounters and transformations in his musical life, from blues to Cajun and mariachi funk. Then, all of a sudden, the title ‘Amos Got Soul’ makes so much sense as you recognise Plaehn’s ability to transfer seamlessly between these soulful, melodic types of music.
But, true to the music he loved since he was in high school, Plaehn’s album explores melancholic themes of love and loss – the blues in the definitive sense of the word. Sounding a lot like Lyle Lovett but with a Muddy Waters mystique, Plaehn’s understanding of authentic soul radiates throughout “Amos Got Soul” in his cadence, lyrics and production. There is no concerted effort to embrace contemporary themes or instrumentation yet the album doesn’t sound any less relevant as the style of the album remains very timeless and great to listen to.