Soul man

Blasts from the past. My review of R&B singer Decosta Boyce:

Is that a Commodores riff? And a hint of Sam & Dave too? Part of the pleasure of this energised gig was trying to spot the different influences. Cool and charismatic, Decosta Boyce is a British R&B singer who was raised on his mother’s record collection. His album Electrick Soul — one of the funkiest releases of last year — is laced with references to illustrious names. James Brown, Prince and Otis Redding are just some of the artists in his bloodstream.

If that makes him sound like a wannabe from Stars in their Eyes, his personality and songwriting skills mark him out as much more than a retro act. He is, in any case, a little old to be described as an absolute beginner. If that face and impressive afro look vaguely familiar it is because Boyce previously released a disc when he was making his way in the world as Nathan Watson. (His full name is — deep breath — Nathan Daniel Decosta Boyce Watson.)

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Chief theatre critic for The Times. Twitter: CliveDavisUK Facebook: Instagram: clivephotos
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