Special kind %

of diva

Dina Carroll first came to public attention when she teamed up with Quartz to cover ‘It’s Too Late’ with the success of ‘Ain’t No Man’ added to her credits she’s teaming up with remix maestros C&C Music Factory. Craig McLean discovers the warmth in her soul.

‘It’s a lot warmer an album than I expected,‘ I say to Dina Carroll.

‘What did you expect?‘ she asks.

‘I was expecting a lot of slickness, if that’s the word. But you’ve got a gospel choir in there. there are orchestral arrangements, there’s a rogue harmonica. Little flourishes like that. It seems a lot more welcoming somehow. Were you striving for that effect in adding those touches, or was it just a happy by-product?’

‘Mmmm . . .’ mulls Dina Carroll.

Full ofthings that make you go mmmm . . . as much can be said ofthe soulful dance and danceful soul of Dina Carroll. Especially as her next single hinges round the dextrous talents of (Robert) Clivilles and (David) Cole of C&C Music Factory. ‘Special Kind Of Love’ is the follow-up to Carroll‘s ‘summer smash hit ‘Ain’t No Man’, and is the sound of an artist affirming her solo stardom stature after a couple of hiccups and diversions. 1989 offered the first glimpse of Carroll, by way of two singles with Jive both fizzled out, the relationship was seemingly doomed, and record company and artist went their separate ways. Undaunted, Carroll cast around for an outlet for her vocal talents.



ea... L U B S BACARDI aw...


. ' r_ 2 past proven classics or bygone kiddies’ TV themes. " j] , Let’s pause to forgive Dina Carroll, since her

I2 ? subsequent work shuns such Machiavellian

* 3 machinations. ‘lt’s Too Late’ was just a bridge or a . ? way-station on the route to somewhere more

' ' 5 edifying.

Through her new management she linked up

I, with London producer and songwriter Nigel

Lowis. Initial nervousness notwithstanding— this , team writing concept requiring some pretty total '1 gelling of minds and moods— ‘We just got a great 1 feeling of how to write together,’ she says.

‘The thing with Nigel and myself is that we’re

both mad about the old Aretha sound, The

i Temptations, and he’s a complete 705 freak.

3 We’ve drawn a lot from that . . . We want to go

, back to that not kick dance in the face or push it 3 aside, because we’ve both been launched by that. But our love for music definitely goes back to the j older style.’

The flipside of this respect for the sweet and

Q sanctified soul past (and of the classy

! embellishments that dot her debut album) is Carroll’s embracing of the immediacy of the

contemporary club culture that was her birthplace. f ‘Ain’t No Man’ was bullish and bolshie, its flyaway stridency lent power by that belting, diva-like

' voice. For the follow-up, Carroll has let her

songwriting interests take a back seat as the C&C

" i chaps stepped forward to offer their writing and

: production services. ‘It’s a massive privilege. I’m

U / .3 ' the first British artiste they’ve worked with,’ she

‘I met up with an old management contact I’d worked with years ago, and he had a project. He said, “I’ve got a couple of boys here and they’ve got this song they’re dying to put out. Would you listen to it and see if you want to vocal it?" I loved the song and what they’d done to it, so we went and recorded it.‘

And released it under the name Quartz and watched as their cover ofCarole King’s ‘It’s Too Late‘ (early 70s bedsit standard transformed into early 905 dancefloor burner) went Top Ten. Let's pause to brush aside any qualms we may have regarding opportunistic 905 (dance) acts and their easy option practice ofcloning and bleepifying

says, using the word artiste rather than plain ol’ artist, as if to emphasise the Stamess and Special

Character that are real soul music’s stock-in-trade.

Naturally, to elevate Dina Carroll to that music’s

; pantheon of ‘artistes’ some months before her f debut album is even released would be hype-tastic folly.

But give her time, watch her grow, and the 23-year-old just might reach the pinnacle of souldom. Next thing you know, it’ll be Dina Carroll soundtracking a Levi’s ad. Now that would be real soul star quality.

Dina Carroll’s second 3010 single, Special Kind Of Love, is out on 28 September. Her self-titled debut album will be released in the New Year.

parts oi your anatomy.

Delay have the rave lormula oil pat. But

:- Delayed reaction

‘You really have to be there. It's like that with most rave records, anyway. You have to see how it goes down.‘ Suburban Delay‘s Gordon Tennant relates the code ol practice for digesting and appreciating the Livingston duo's debut single, ‘Energy Rush’. Context is everything. Listen to ‘Energy Rush‘ in your bedroom ol an altemoon and its cyclical robotics and

electronic insect bun will have your | eyelids twitching long beiore any other I

But what do I know? ‘Energy Bush‘ is a rave anthem, an enormotrack lor the enormodomes where Suburban Delay have made their name overthe past six months. At the Rezerection extravaganza at lngiiston, up against the likes oi The Prodigy and N-Jol, Suburban Delay ‘wiped the floor with them.‘

Tennant cheerlully acknowledges the limitations ol their ilrst release: ‘We wrote it to be the last record at the night. It’s just a big intro, it’s not really a song or a tune.‘

Such is its attraction. As the meeting of minds beteen a DJ and a Raver (SD's other hall, Alastair Angus) Suburban

with another two singles and an album to lollow tor Jive/Clubscene Records, plus an ever-expanding itinerary of club engagements, they‘re sussed enough to move iorward.

‘The next one’s not a song either, it‘s more along the lines at 2 Unlimited. it's really, really catchy. We've got another six or seven dilierent projects, dillerent bands. We‘re looking at lilm themes, Vangelis, that sort ol stutt.’

And ilnally, maybe most importantly, “Most ol the stuli we do does have a tunel’ (Craig McLean)

‘Energy iiush' is on lntemal Altair: Records.

sponsored by BACARDI RUM

The List 25 September 8 October 1992 57