From Here to Eternally
After faltering a moment following the departure of classic lead vocalist Phillipe Wynne, The Spinners recovered in 1979 to close out strong in a decade that they all but dominated. They had the aid of Thom Bell, the Philadelphia International arranger who guided the group through a string of mid-'70s masterpieces. Bell’s golden touch is evident on “One Man Wonderful Band” and “Are You Ready for Love,” which streamline the lush sounds of his orchestral visions. “Once You Fall in Love” is one of the group’s most potent concoctions: a merger of lascivious funk and midtempo disco that competes with the pimp styles of guys like Johnny “Guitar” Watson without selling out any of The Spinners’ signature class. New frontman John Edwards leads the group through the earnest ballad “A Plain and Simple Love Song,” which rekindles some of the generosity of early Spinners. But really, the group’s spirit is best defined by “It’s a Natural Affair,” which in a strange way seems to encapsulate The Spinners' once-endless string of hits, complete with a propulsive rhythm and a melody that twirls through your memory and takes its place next to all the eternal Spinners melodies of years past.