MARC ANTHONY THOMPSON (Buy CDs by this artist)
Marc Anthony Thompson (Warner Bros.) 1984
Watts and Paris (Reprise/Warner Bros.) 1989
On his debut LP, this hard-to-categorize maverick born in Panama, raised in California makes slick, soulful pop music that manages to be both subtle and edgy. Thompson gives free reign to his poised, slightly gritty voice in a variety of settings, from cool struttin' ("So Fine") to moody romance ("Love Cools Down") to after-hours elegance ("Coffee").
Five years later, Watts and Paris sports a nastier, more percussive edge, with in-your-face singing and dense, oddball arrangements obviously inspired by Prince. Don't miss the murky "Monkeytime," a startling attack on Paul Simon ("I taped the black man so let me be/South Africa been so good to me"), the hard funk of "In Time" and the screaming "I Never Promised." Tough and compelling, Thompson is a widely undiscovered talent on a major label.[Jon Young]
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