Sunny & the Sunliners
Mr. Brown Eyed Soul (Big Crown)
Reviewed by Thomas Fawcett, Fri., Nov. 24, 2017
Architects of San Antonio's Westside sound, Sunny & the Sunliners remain undersung everywhere outside of the Alamo City limits. Brooklyn's Big Crown Records aims to correct that with Mr. Brown Eyed Soul, a lovingly curated set of 15 English-language lowrider oldies recorded 1966-72 for Sunny Ozuna's indie imprint Key-Loc Records. Dripping nostalgia, these soul slices come plucked straight from a Sixties South Texas high school dance, "Should I Take You Home" in particular capturing the fresh air of innocence: "The moon was shining as we stared at the sky/ We were grooving as the time rolled by." Save the surprisingly gritty funk of "Get Down," the compilation of heartbreak ballads brims sweet doo-wop harmonies, Tejano horn lines, and Ozuna's gentle croon. It's a recipe as timeless as Tex-Mex.