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The Universal Masters Collection: Classic Isley Brothers

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Album Review

Classic Isley Brothers: The Universal Masters Collection is an 18-track disc released in Europe that looks almost exactly like Early Classics — a disc that was released around the same time in 2000. In fact, the two releases contain the same selection of songs, but the sequencing is slightly different between the two. Regardless, this is an adequate compilation of the Isley Brothers' Motown stint, including their lone hit from it — "This Old Heart of Mine" — along with several other Holland-Dozier-Holland songs "("Stop! In the Name of Love,"" "Leaving Here," "Baby Don't You Do It"), and a song co-written by a very young Leon Ware ("Catching Up on Time"). The chief problem with the disc is its title. It's misleading; most of the contents aren't classic at all.


Formed: 1954 in Cincinnati, OH

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

First formed in the early '50s, the Isley Brothers enjoyed one of the longest, most influential, and most diverse careers in the pantheon of popular music -- over the course of nearly a half century of performing, the group's distinguished history spanned not only two generations of Isley siblings but also massive cultural shifts which heralded their music's transformation from gritty R&B to Motown soul to blistering funk. The first generation of Isley siblings was born and raised in Cincinnati,...
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