Liner Note Authors: Ady Croasdell; Tony Rounce.
Ace's 2016 compilation Harmony of the Soul: Vocal Groups 1962-1977 concentrates on the golden age of harmony soul -- the groups that appeared in the wake of doo wop's early-'60s decline. Compiled, produced, and annotated by Ady Croasdell and Tony Rounce, Harmony of the Soul occupies a middle ground between the familiar and the obscure: there are no big hits here, but it also doesn't concentrate solely on rarities. Instead, it's crate-digging at its finest, with Croasdell and Rounce excavating fine sides, either released to small audiences or confined to the vaults in the years since their initial recordings. Despite the title's implied promise that a fair chunk of the 24-track compilation would be anchored in the '60s, the majority of Harmony of the Soul is comprised of sweet, smooth soul made in the '70s; the '60s material can be heard as a precursor to this sound. Perhaps there aren't many outright knockouts on this collection, but the charm is how every one of these cuts comes on slow and sultry, assured in the power of their seductive technique. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine