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Ike and Tina Turner

The Complete Pompeii Recordings 1968-1969

Review by Gary Hill
This set encompasses three individual albums. That said, these albums are each rather on the short side, in the neighborhood of half an hour. The first two really are Ike and Tina Turner albums. CD 3, though is just Ike Turner along with the Kings of Rhythm. That disc is instrumental. There is definitely some strong music here, and I'd say that this is worth having.
 
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Track by Track Review
CD 1: Ike & Tina Turner - So Fine

                       
Bet'cha Can't Kiss Me (Just One Time)

This is a very 60s rock kind of thing. The backing vocals bring a bit of a soul vibe, but this is definitely more rock than it is soul. It's a classy tune. The one thing I question about it is that there are some "chipmunk" vocals. Those really cheapen the cut.

Ain't Nobody's Business
A high energy soulful number, this is solid. Given what we now know about the relationship between the two Turners, this song is a little hard to take. It just feels like a defense of spousal abuse. This is a case of too much information ruining the experience.
It Sho Ain't Me
Here we have a slow, soulful tune. This has some definite 60s trappings, too. It's really quite bluesy.
Too Hot to Hold
I love the horn section on this. Tina Turner's powerhouse vocals are the real selling point here, though. This is a soul powerhouse start to finish.
A Fool in Love
Here is another smoking hot soul tune. The horn section adds a lot to this one. I love the wandering bass line, too. This is one of the strongest cuts of the whole set really.
I Better Get ta Steppin'
A bit bluesy, this has some great horns and hooks.
Shake a Tail Feather
Another with a lot of energy and groove, this has a real old school rock and roll sound. The backing vocals and horns both bring some charms to the table.
So Fine
As guitar opens this, it's clear that the title track is going to take us back into 60s rock territory. The best description of this would be "60s folk rock with some soul in the mix." It's a good tune, but definitely feels dated.
We Need an Understanding
A high energy soul rocker, this is a strong tune.
You're so Fine
The bass really shines here. This cut isn't a real standout, except for that bass line. It's a cool way to end things in style.
CD 2: Ike & Tina Turner - Cussin', Cryin' and Carryin' On
                    

Cussin', Cryin' and Carryin' On

This has a great soul groove to it. The vocals are trademark Tina Turner.

Poor Little Fool
This is very much an old school blues song. It has a real down-home vibe to it. While this isn't my favorite tune here by a long shot, I love the variety and authenticity it brings.   
So Blue over You
This has more of a mainstream soul vibe. There are definitely nods the girl group sound, too.
Nothing You Can Do Boy (To Change My Way)
I really dig the bass sound on this. The cut is more of a soul tune that's not a real standout, though. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with it. It's just not a real standout. The ending is oddly abrupt.
I'm Fed Up
I like this tune a lot. The vocals really drive this thing. It's a classy rocker with soul and rock music combined in fine fashion.
You Got What You Wanted
This is exactly the kind of soulful rock you expect from Ike and Tina Turner. The vocals are the real selling point, but this is one of the stronger tunes in the set. There is a definite 60s rock vibe here.
Make 'Em Wait
A bouncy sort of soul meets old school rocker, this is solid, but not a standout.
Beauty Is Just Skin Deep
This is a cool soul groove. It's nothing exceptional, but just very effective.
Thinking Black
The horns really stand out here. This is a classy tune with a lot of jazz in the mix. This is a cool instrumental.
Black Beauty
Here's another instrumental, part jazz, part soul and part 60s rock. It's cool stuff.
I Better Get ta Stepppin'
A repeat from the previous disc, I dig this version quite a bit. It's so classy. In fact, I think I like this one better than that one.
CD 3: Ike Turner and the Kings of Rhythm - A Black Man's Soul
                      

Thinking Black

I love the jazzy, bouncy kind of groove of this cool tune. It's another version of one of the two instrumentals on the last CD.

Black Beauty
There is no huge change here, but this is just more soulful jazz. It's fun stuff. It's another repeat from CD 2.
Ghetto Funk
This seems to cry out for some vocals. It's a great groove, but it just seems to be missing singing. I mean, the arrangement feels like it left places for the vocals. That makes this feel unfinished.
Blacks' Alley
Nothing all that special, this is not bad, but definitely one of the weaker pieces here.
Black Angel
With some honky tonk piano and a cool old school jazz groove, this is fun. It's a highlight of this particular CD. It's very retro in sound, even for the time it was released. That's not a bad thing, though.
Getting Nasty
This fun instrumental seems to be a live recording. It's one of the highlights of this third disc.
Funky Mule
I really love the killer jazz groove on this thing. There is some killer bass work on this thing, too.
Philly Dog
This is a powerhouse jazz groove. It's one of the best on this CD. The hooks are solid and the whole tune just rocks.
Scotty Souling
This groove is entertaining, but not a real standout. It's perhaps more 50s rock than it is anything else.
Up Hard
More funky jazz is the order of business here. This does have that sort of stepping soul sound that was such a big deal in the Motown sound. There is some exceptional piano work here.
Nuttin' Up
Piano starts this and drives a lot of the piece. It's again not a huge departure, but a solid piece of music. I suppose that it's more old school than some of the rest are.
Freedom Sound
Speaking of old school, this has a real old school blues sound. It's a classy tune. It's a nice change of pace, too.
 
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