Love Unlimited Orchestra Rhapsody In White
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- Released: May 19, 1998
- Originally Released: 1998
- Label: Island / Mercury
Song previews provided courtesy of iTunes
Personnel includes: Love Unlimited Orchestra; Barry White (conductor).
Digitally remastered by Gary N. Mayo (PolyGram Studios).
All tracks have been digitally remastered from the original master tapes using 20-bit technology.
Personnel: Emmett North, Jr. (guitar).
Arrangers: Gene Page; Barry White.
The press may have dubbed Barry White "the walrus of love," but he was certainly the guru of something for many star crossed lovers across his Love Unlimited Orchestra output. While White rocketed up the charts with his solo "I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little Bit More" in 1973, it was that same year's smash single "Love's Theme" that shot Love Unlimited Orchestra right up alongside him. Mostly instrumental, all orchestral, and packed with "that" tchka tchka guitar and full-fledged disco sound well before the genre reached maturity, Rhapsody in White set the stage and showcased the sounds that would shortly inspire a generation of producers, arrangers, and performers to start a million mirror balls spinning the world over. This album, in all its admitted smarminess, is a triumph. From the opening bars of "Barry's Theme," Rhapsody in White unleashes a groove which really keeps it all mellow. And even though we have to listen through three tracks to first hear White's trademarked vocal come-on on "Midnight and You" it's well worth the wait. He gets a little more vocal on side two, across "Don't Take It All Away" and again at the beginning of "Baby Blues," which has shag rug in front of a fireplace written all over its arrangement. But the masterful finale, of course, is "Love's Theme." The song's lush strings and smooth wah-wah guitars not only typified a genre, they also became an aural catchphrase for an entire generation of clubbers. And because this is, underneath it all, a Barry White album, the teaser for the nightcap is delicious. ~ Amy Hanson
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