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4.4 out of 5 stars12
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 4, 2012
This is perhaps Cliff's best CD in many years. A few songs: Saving a Life; When I Was Your Baby; I'm Your Puppet; Always and Forever are songs that should easily be at the top of adult contemporary charts. Several others add a gritty soulful strength to the CD. The more I listen, the more I enjoy it. Saving a Life, the opening song, is one of the finest we'll hear all year. For the legendary British singer who has been performing for more than 50-years, this is a great achievement. The unfortunate thing about it is the American music public has never embraced Cliff on a sustained basis (although he remarkably has had U.S. hits in each decade beginning in the 50s). If you appreciate great music, buy this CD.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on October 20, 2011
Recorded in Memphis with Motown songwriting legend Lamont Dozier, Cliff Richard's first studio album since turning 70, "Soulicious", may seem an unlikely new direction for a singer synonymous with old-fashioned rock & roll and schmaltzy Christmas ballads, but having previously released 1998's R&B-themed "Real as I Wanna Be" and singing duets with the likes of Janet Jackson and Dionne Warwick, it's not as radical a departure as you might think.
Unfortunately, despite its credible behind the scenes team and an impressive guest list featuring some of the genre's greatest vocalists, the follow-up to his big-band effort, "Bold as Brass", lacks the soul needed to justify its bombastic title. Indeed, having recruited the likes of Billy Paul, Candi Staton, and Percy Sledge, it's a shame that their legendary talents are wasted on karaoke renditions of Heatwave's "Always and Forever", Womack & Womack's "Teardrops", and James & Bobby Purify's "I'm Your Puppet", respectively, while it's hard to see where the likes of the driving pop/rock ballad "Saving a Life", the falsetto-led synth pop of "Every Piece of My Broken Heart", the completely unexpected Lady Gaga pastiche, "Don't Say You Love Me (It'll Ruin My Day)", and the acid house grooves on closer "Birds of a Feather" fit in with the soul music concept.
However, there are several more encouraging results spread throughout these 15 tracks.
The New Stylistics' collaboration "How We Get Down" echoes the smooth Philly soul of the original five-piece in their '70s heyday; "She Looked Good" is a toe-tapping slice of infectious, brass-fused, soul-pop featuring the uplifting harmonies of Dennis Edwards and the Temptations, while "Are U Feeling Me?" is a gentle, string-soaked ballad which recalls the glossy '80s soul of its featured vocalist, Deniece Williams.
It's admirable that having entered his eighth decade, Richard is still willing to explore new avenues, but having assembled a roster of artists most soul aficionados could only dream of, Soulicious' lack of focus and disappointingly flat production means it's hard to shake the feeling that he's wasted his opportunity to add another string to his bow. J. O'Brien
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on October 19, 2011
I have to admit that I think Sir Cliff has surpassed himself. Soulicious, in my humble (and I don't do humble for anyone, so that's saying something) opinion is one of his best albums ever, and I think you could make a case for it being his best album since Something's Goin' On (2004), but I hesitate to say it, mainly because Cliff's albums are different each time. I think, for example, comparing Soulicious with Bold As Brass, Cliff's jazz and swing classics album from last year, would be unfair because the two albums are just so different in style, it would be like comparing chalk and cheese.

In truth I think Soulicious is the sort of album Cliff could have been recording for years. I think it was the late Mickie Most who once said that Cliff has, and I hope this won't offend anyone, a black edge to his voice. I think that's spot on, and I think he uses it to its full effect on this one. Us Brits know Cliff, I suppose, for rock and pop, but on Soulicious he gets to unleash his ability with this R&B and soul material, and the style fits him like a well made glove. In a way the natural forerunner for this album is Real As I Wanna Be (1998), with its glorious R&B feel, but on this one Cliff takes it even further, and the results, for my money, are staggering.

The vocals on the whole album are sublime. Cliff is heartbreaking on Go On And Tell Him, a track I openly admit to crying at the first time I heard it, with its message that a broken relationship is fixable, all the woman has to do is tell the new boyfriend that she still loves the ex and go back where she should be. However, really get the tissues out for Do You Ever, where Cliff pours out his soul and hands it to you virtually gift-wrapped. Imagine Miss You Nights, a classic from 1976, multiplied by a factor of about 1000 and you'll get how weepy this one is. I should also say that Brenda Holloway is fantastic on Do You Ever. Her vocals are wonderful and add to the intensity of Cliff's to perfection. Get the tissues out and listen.

Soulicious sort of hits you between the eyes. Right from the off with Saving A Life something palpably different is going on here. There is a joyous energy to the whole album, where I think the balance has been struck between an authentic Motown/Soul sound, especially on tracks such as Saving A Life, This Time With You, She Looked Good, Are U Feeling Me and How We Get Down (glorious harmonies on this one), with contemporary soul style, such as in tracks like Birds Of A Feather, Every Piece Of My Broken Heart (with stunning falsetto vocals from Cliff) and Don't Say You Love Me, which for me has all the dynamics of We Don't Talk Anymore. There is a level of anatagonistic venom in Don't Say You Love Me that might even surprise a few, you know, those who think Cliff is all ballads and Christmas songs, people like music journalists and critics, who wouldn't know Cliff's work if it smacked them on the nose.

I think it's hard to tell what the covers are and what the new tracks are, at least on listening. All of them blend so well together. I'm Your Puppet is so laid-back and cool it needs an overcoat and slippers, but Teardrops is so energetic it could run a marathon. Oh How Happy is full on gospel, rather like The Miracle from Real in style, then there is Always And Forever, where Cliff's warm rich vocals lead the way to Billy Paul ad-libbing his heart out, and doing so with such class.

I really don't think there is a bad track on the album. They all fit together beautifully. I also don't think people need to worry about Cliff not being centre-stage with the duets. This is very much Cliff's album, make no mistake about it, but the guest vocals work so well with him. There are too many highlights to mention really, but Candi Staton, Peabo Bryson and Brenda Holloway work so well with Cliff, adding colour and depth, but also allowing Cliff to lead and shine.

If there is any justice Cliff will have an absolute smash with this one. He deserves to. Everyone who loves good music should own this fine album.
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on December 28, 2013
I am a collector of all Cliff Richards music. "Soulicious",is once again a delightful duets collaboration with original wording & titles with a real touch of SOUL..
Cliff Richards music surrounded me in the 60's at theaters,cinema along with television,wireless,records,8 tracks,DVD's & CD's of which still continues,today in 2013,as only before Christmas on BBCAmerica,Sir Cliff Richard,was a guest on the Graham Norton Show,aired in England,singing his newly released song written in his original words ..."Gorgeous"...

Excellent Seller and delivers,as promised. Reasonably priced.S.H.
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on January 29, 2013
Cliff Richard is a British national treasure for his many albums, singles and good deeds. Add to that list "Soulicious," his crossover R&B/pop album. Tempered duets with Candi Staton, Dennis Edwards and other American R&B stars show off his smooth voice once again, singing songs mostly penned by a Dozier family member (Holland-Dozier-Holland wrote many of Motown's biggest hits). Most of the songs here are winners, but a couple were done better by Elton John on his duets album. Fans should note that Cliff offers one solo number here--"Don't Say You Love Me (It'll Ruin My Day)." Well worth buying.
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on August 3, 2014
Soulicious by Cliff Richard has him doing what he does so well. He frequently stretches himself to reinvent his image as a pop star, and offers something new to stay current. This CD has him teaming up with many soul greats and entertains us well. Particular favorites are Saing A Life with Freda Payne, Do You Ever with Brenda Holloway, Teardrops with Candi Staton, Every Piece Of My Broken Heart with Valerie Simpson, This Time With You with Candi Staton, and by himself Don't Say You Love Me. Cliff Richard fans, and soul fans will like this the most.
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on December 1, 2012
Have been a Cliff fan for years. This album has many great tracks on it. It also shows his continued growth as a singer. Willing to try new styles. His voice is still amazing.
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on October 2, 2013
What can I say? If you like Cliff Richard you'll love this CD. Sings duets with the likes of Billy Paul, Candi Stanton, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr and Roberta Flack.
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on August 19, 2015
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on February 21, 2015
love hearing these songs in 2011. Very upbeat.
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