The Delfonics/Tell Me This Is A Dream
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  • The Delfonics' fourth and fifth albums, 1970's The Delfonics and 1972's Tell Me This Is a Dream, are combined onto one CD on this reissue with the addition of historical liner notes. Since many of these tracks were originally issued on singles, and since the best of those singles are on best-of compilations, this is really primarily for the devoted Delfonics fan/soul collector. Of course it's good to have for the historic record in an attractive package, and is generally good Philadelphia soul, though with the filler tracks that were customary on most soul LPs of the time. The Delfonics is the considerably superior of the pair, including as it does the smash hit "Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time)," as well as the three subsequent high-charting R&B singles "When You Get Right Down to It," "Trying to Make a Fool of Me," and "Over and Over." Actually, eight of its ten tracks had previously seen use as A-sides and B-sides, and of the two other tunes, the instrumental "Delfonics Theme (How Could You)" is certainly padding considering its placement on an LP by a soul vocal group. Overall, however, it's the Delfonics reaching their peak, combining luscious harmonies and state-of-the-art Philly soul production not only on the hits, but also on the relatively obscure 1969 45 "Funny Feeling" and the uncharacteristically uptempo "Down Is Up, Up Is Down." Unfortunately, Tell Me This Is a Dream is a letdown in comparison, probably due in no small measure to the absence of Thom Bell, who had been instrumental to the success of the material on The Delfonics as both songwriter and arranger. It still includes the midsize soul hits "Walk Right Up to the Sun" and "Tell Me This Is a Dream," but the songs on the whole are relatively average. But if you can't get enough of that early-'70s Philly soul sound, the production still includes some essential elements of that style, as well as a vocal version of "Delfonics Theme (How Could You)." ~ Richie Unterberger
Professional Reviews
Record Collector (magazine) (p.101) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "The Hart brothers, Wilbert and William, with writer and producer Thom Bell, sculpted intricate symphonic soul..."
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