One of the major conversational elements that springs up between myself and friend Henrique has to do with the music industry. In particular how many within it simply will not (or do not) fully understand the importance of groups in terms of project a singular talent-such as a vocalist. Gladys Knight & The Pips stuck it out very well years and years after many of their contemporaries had. And were having huge success during the 1980’s as well. Gladys herself has a solo career in the late 70’s/early 80’s. But now the entire group was going to try again on a different level.
Midnight Star’s Reggie & Vincent Calloway (assisted her and brother/fellow Pip Bubba Knight) made sure the bands career together went out with a bang rather than a whimper. “Love Overboard” is a big stomping bass/guitar led late 80’s style melodic dance/funk groove. “Lovin’ On Next To Nothin’ ” adds hand claps and other elements for a more percussive Latin freestyle flavor. The mid tempo “Thief In Paradise” brings a heavier electronic flavor while “You”,”Let Me Be The One”, “It’s Gonna Take All Our Love”,”Point Of View” and “Overnight Success” have strong new jack slow jam overtones.
The richly melodic, catchy “Complete Recovery”,the more pop oriented “Love Is Life (Love Is Ice)” and the Afro Caribbean inspired “Say What You Mean” round out this album with three more exciting uptempo numbers. While they’re known and celebrated more for individual songs? I’ve always personally viewed Gladys Knight & The Pips as something of an album oriented act as well.
Generally staying close to their own creative process? The group seemed to be keen on avoiding insubstantial filler songs. With a very strong emphasis over the years on quality control. The Calloway’s are superb on bringing in the harder edged electro rhythmic stomp,chunky bass and guitar as well as keyboards for a phat,yet stripped down late 80’s funky soul approach that gives this iconic group the kind of wonderful sendoff they truly deserved as a functional unit.