Album Reviews

First Choice: Hold Your Horses (Big Break Records)

 

first choice

1979’s Hold Your Horses was a major sonic departure for R&B trio First Choice. Up until the release of this, their fifth album, the band specialized in a pleasant, albeit atypical Soul sound. For this album, producer Tom Moulton and label Salsoul sent the three ladies to Germany to record. If one instantly thinks of Donna Summer when they hear the first notes of album opener “Let Me Down Easy,” it’s understandable; assistant producer Thor Baldursson had worked with Summer and Giorgio Moroder. The results were stunning; though the album might seem a bit thin with only six songs, those six songs are of epic length, of pulsating beats and hypnotic rhythms, accentuated by the heavenly voices of Rochelle Fleming, Annette Guest, and Debbie Martin, which float around and harmonize together in a way that’s pure disco perfection. Every single moment of the album’s half-dozen songs is a moment of sonic joy, and just try not to get caught up in dancing to “Love Thang” and “Double Cross.” “Great Expectations” wasn’t released as a single, perhaps due to its overt similarity to Summer’s “I Feel Love,” but it’s a great moment nonetheless. The quality of Hold Your Horses is so high that the bonus remixes don’t feel at all superfluous, and the 78 minutes of this reissue are, simply put, pure Disco bliss.

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