2013’s My True Story didn’t quite live up to expectations. Produced by Keith Richards and Don Was, it captured the New Orleans maven on a series of covers for Blue Note; the result solid, but not classic. This follow up, released on Neville’s Tell It Records, is, thankfully, so much better. Recorded in Brooklyn’s Studio G with producer Eric Krasno (Tedeschi Trucks Band) and an intuitive band featuring Dap-Kings’ trumpeter David Guy and alto saxophonist Cochemea Gastelum, the 11 tracks, all originals penned or co-penned by Neville or Krasno, get to Neville’s very heart, placing his sweet voice in a gritty R&B setting.
Three years after the release of My Story, his lone album for Blue Note, Aaron Neville relaunched the Tell It label (through Kobalt) with the very different Apache. In a way, it's among his freshest and yet also one of his oldest-sounding solo albums. Surprisingly, the compositions are strictly originals, all written by Neville with producer and multi-instrumentalist Eric Krasno (Soulive, Lettuce) and Dave Gutter (Rustic Overtones).
Doctors report that birth rates increase one million percent every time listeners hear the sweet voice of Aaron Neville. Okay, I made that up. But it’s difficult to imagine crooning more sensual than his. If some honeyed vocals sound as if butter could melt in the singer’s mouth, Neville’s could melt rocks into lava.