Eliza Neals was supposed to be an opera singer, and even earned a BA Degree in Music with an emphasis in opera. Instead, she fell in love with soul and blues. As time went on, Neals wanted to perform the blues, and soul, in her own voice; vocally, and musically. Breaking and Entering is the latest realization of her efforts. From the opening notes of “Detroit Drive,” Neals and company grab us, shake us, caress us, and at record’s end, deposit us in a blissful, disheveled, spent heap.
This is a well rounded album, with Neals writing or co-writing all 12 tracks. As always, we did have our favorites. “Detroit Drive” really rocks, and Neals uses her powerful voice to perfectly complement the track. “Breaking and Entering” is a simmering caldron of rockin’ blues in the tradition of Leslie West, and her vocal definitely reminds us of Janis Joplin. “Sugar Daddy,” co-written with Neals’ friend and mentor, Barrett Strong, is an up-tempo, rocking, Memphis soul excursion that works well.
We liked the varied song tempos. We especially enjoyed that the mix was done in such a way as to allow all the wonderful textures of this music to be available to the listener. This is an exquisite album to enjoy through a set of quality headphones.
Would we recommend this to our friends? In a New York minute.
Breaking and Entering
Released February 2015
Running time: 51 minutes
E-H Records: 889211222018