Nicole Willis & the Soul Investigators

Keep Reachin' Up (Light in the Attic)

Phases & Stages

Nicole Willis & the Soul Investigators

Keep Reachin' Up (Light in the Attic)

It's hard not to float back into the shadows of Motown after staring at the soft-lit cover photo of Nicole Willis, eyes come-hither, skin aglow. Even after the album's second track, "If This Ain't Love (Don't Know What Is)," slaps you back into 2007. The Brooklyn-born Willis makes her first appearance with the Finnish ninepiece Soul Investigators, who do some funky mining on their third album, Keep Reachin' Up, released stateside two years after its European debut by Seattle's Light in the Attic. The Supreme "My Four Leaf Clover," funky brass of "A Perfect Kind of Love," complete with a white-hot organ breakdown, and late-night Seventies swoon of "No One's Gonna Love You" connect Detroit and Lapland in the here and now. Like Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, the group does "retro-soul" up right, right down to the hand claps and shoop-shoops of "Invisible Man." Vintage soul with a new millennial coat of paint.

***

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
The Monstas
Meet the Monstas (Record Review)

Margaret Moser, July 6, 2007

Phases & Stages
The Dynamites featuring Charles Walker
Kaboom! (Record Review)

Christopher Gray, June 15, 2007

More by Audra Schroeder
SXSW Interactive Conference Quick Cuts
The Signal & the Noise
Statistician Nate Silver on more data, more problems

March 15, 2013

SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'Kiss of the Damned'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

March 15, 2013

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle