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Mann Made
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  • The group's second British album -- released just as the original lineup was entering a state of collapse with the impending departure of two key members -- shows some of the changes that can happen in a year, as they moved away from Chess Records' brand of blues as their baseline. Instead, they produced a sound that's slightly smoother and a lot more soulful. A handful of originals, mostly by Mike Vickers and Mike Hugg with one Paul Jones-authored number thrown in, are scattered amid covers of songs originated by the Temptations, the Skyliners, and T-Bone Walker. If it isn't as fierce, bold, or daringly ambitious as the Manfreds' debut long-player, Mann Made is just as much a virtuoso effort, and a surprisingly cohesive one, considering that it was released immediately after Mike Vickers and Paul Jones announced their respective departures from the band. The 1997 EMI 100th Anniversary series edition features 24-bit digital EMI CD remastering, which is as sharp and clean as one could possibly hope for. ~ Bruce Eder
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