Muzik - 12/98, p.944 stars out of 5
- "...A wonderful compliment to The Temptations' classic output and shows the young 'uns a thing or two about recordings."
The Temptations: Otis Williams, Ron Tyson, Barrington Henderson, Terry Weeks, Harry McGillberry (vocals).
Additional personnel includes: Jerry Hey (conductor); Dennis Nelson, Sonny Lallerstedt (guitar); Ralph Morrison (violin); Theo Peoples (piano, keyboards); Jimi Fischer (guitar, keyboards, synthesizer, bass, drums, percussion, programming); Arther "Buster" Marbury III, Rex Rideout, Ronnie Garrett (keyboards, programming); Narada Michael Walden (drums, tamborine, programming).
The Polyester Players: Greg Dalton (guitar); Don Hayes (alto saxophone); Jetro Da Silva (keyboards); Keith Rouster (bass); Takuya Hirano (percussion).
Producers: Isaias Gamboa, Narada Michael Walden, Arthur Marbury III.
Engineers include: Bob Tucker, Jimi Fifischer, David Frazer.
PHOENIX RISING was nominated for the 1999 Grammy Award for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance. "Stay" was nominated for the 1999 Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal.
Personnel: The Temptations (background vocals); Jimi "The Sweet" Fischer (guitar, keyboards, string synthesizer, drums, percussion, programming); Dennis Nelson, Nils Juptner, Sonny Lallerstedt, Greg Dalton, R. David Tucker, Greg Moore (guitar); Donald Hayes (alto saxophone); Theo Peoples (piano, keyboards); Mike Mani (Fender Rhodes piano, drum programming); Rodney "Cortada" Alejandro, Darin "Zone" McKinney (keyboards, programming); Arthur Marbury, Rex Rideout, Ronnie Garrett (keyboards, drum programming); Victor Carstarphen, Jetro Dasilva (keyboards); Narada Michael Walden (drums, tambourine, percussion, bass programming); Greg "Gigi" Gonaway (cymbals); Takuya "Taku" Hirano (percussion); Isaias Gamboa (drum programming).
Audio Mixers: David Frazer; Arthur Marbury; Isaias Gamboa; Thom "TK" Kidd; Tony Black; Bob Tucker .
Audio Remixer: John Fort‚.
Recording information: Blue Palm Recording Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA; Tarpan Studios, San Rafael, CA.
Ensemble: Polyester Players.
Introduction by: The Temptations .
Photographer: Norman Jean Roy.
Arrangers: Arthur Marbury; Jerry Hey; Narada Michael Walden; The Temptations .
Hey, it worked for the Isley Brothers, why not for the Temptations? On PHOENIX RISING, the group that virtually defined the Motown sound in the '60s reinvents itself as a contemporary R&B band, complete with subtle drum machine tracks, tight, processed-sounding vocal harmonies and an almost obsessive focus on matters romantic. While David Ruffin and Eddie Kendricks passed away long before the recording of this comeback album, the remaining original members, augmented by some talented new faces, keep the flame of soulful, heartfelt R&B alive. There's little evidence of the group's old sound on PHOENIX RISING, but that just means they're not prepared to condemn themselves to the oldies circuit. Think of this not as a continuation of the past, but as a new beginning. Did we mention that it beats the hell out of R. Kelly?