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CD REVIEW: Shane Philips – Everybody
By Francesco Emmanuel - 11/23/2006 - 12:37 PM EST

Artist: Shane Philips
Album: Everybody
CD Review: Here’s to a soul and funk-filled, groove-oriented album with enough guts, jive, funky beats and jazzy vibes to get you going through your day.

Everybody’ is the latest release by soul-man Shane Philips. He’s a native of Ontario, now living in Montreal, but he sounds like a son of seasoned, southern blues-man to me.

Shane’s voice has a solid, ‘open state-of-mind’ feel, almost as if he can tackle anything, doesn’t matter the genre, he’ll interpret it in his own way and make the groove stick in your head. His tone is thick and strong, it almost sounds as if he’s free-styling, but you know he isn’t, this is just a guy really comfortable in his own right.

The title track starts off the record with an easy-going guitar strum, then Shane kicks in with his powerful, gutsy voice, the chorus breaks into a sort of sing-a-long theme – ‘everybody hold your hands up’. The ending solo is just filled with feel. A rather positive vibe to get things up and running.

‘In the meanwhile’ has this absolutely killer of a groove, the organ just builds the mood, it’s like your foot could just stick to the floor; the beat is that solid! Shane has this ‘preacher-man’ feel to him in this song, the intensity builds with each passing verse. The guitar builds after this slick drum-roll, and then the song just keeps on rising, the crescendo just builds, vocally and musically, and then just quietly subsides. This is smooth stuff!!!

‘She’s mine for life’ again has steady slow feel, with great hooks in the chorus, the guitar line follows with a ‘pull and a bend’ here and there. ‘More than I’ve ever known’ is an acoustic number, the only one on the album and closes off the record, with great harmonies and eloquent falsetto, it’s clear to see why Shane chose this one to finish the record. It’s mellow, yet strong. It left me wanting to hear the whole thing again.

Over his career Shane has grabbed the ears of listeners everywhere, beginning in 1993 when he took home 1st place on Star Search. He has since performed at the Hillside Festival, the Montreal Funkn Soul Festival, the Toronto Jazz Festival and Canadian Music Week.

Shane’s debut release ‘Superfly’ in 2000 resulted in a huge response on Canadian radio and was on continuous rotation in the U.K. for two months. For this album, he teamed up with long-time musical partner Attila Toth, analog studio whiz Nicholas Petrowski and a list of top-notch musicians including Tony Albino (drums), Al Bacuilis (bass), Ricky Pageot (keys), and Dessy Dilauro and Divine Brown on vocals. A number of guitar players were used, including: Bob Cohen, Daniel Thouin, Guy Kaye, Cecile Doo-Kingue and Justin Abedin

It is definitely an honest soul-felt album, no hype, no glitz – all that latter stuff could never be music. This is a soul artist in pure form; he is paying attention to the substance and staying true to the integrity that is required to produce great songs and by extension, a great album, with material worthy to be called music.

I wonder what Shane’s live show is like? His voice sounds so charismatic, I can only imagine how he moves a crowd; he probably has them in the palm on his hand.

I think I’m going to sign myself up for his mailing list, and see when next this guy plays in my neck of the woods. Thanks Shane for a great album. I’ve played it 6 times today!


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