Ty Causey / Loopholes
December 13, 2001
Fort Wayne native Ty Causey has been causing a bit of a stir in certain R&B circles, receiving very favorable reviews for his vocals and co-writing on 1998Â’s Morning Tenderness by jazz-pop soprano saxophonist Najee. LoopHoles, an overdue followup to his debut album, Ty, is comprised of nine original sax-laden R&B songs. CauseyÂ’s rich, buttery voice has been compared to that of the legendary Donny Hathaway and his skills as a keyboardist are formidable. Soulful saxophone is present on nearly every track, compliments of Zedric Â“ZÂ” Teague, providing a nice acoustic contrast to the otherwise synthesized arrangements.
The album kicks off with Â“Your Luv,Â” instantly introducing the listener to the main elements of each song: CauseyÂ’s smooth voice and understated keyboard playing and TeagueÂ’s soaring saxophone, all set against a slow R&B drum beat. Â“No MoreÂ” continues with the standard 1975-era R&B love song lyrics with lines such as Â“No more lonely nights Â‘cause I am here / No more empty heart to fill.Â” A nice combination of vibes and electric piano round of Â“The Love Of My Life,Â” and the upbeat Â“ItÂ’s CrazyÂ” throws a bit of funk into the mix. Â“TyÂ’s CloudÂ” is a sweet, yet short, instrumental showcasing CauseyÂ’s skills as a keyboardist. The final track is another version of Â“Your LuvÂ” but this time marked as Â“A Capella,Â” yet in a creative twist, an Â“a capellaÂ” with instruments.
All in all, LoopHoles is a fine collection of original R&B love songs. One irk, however: for all the effort Causey put into writing and arranging these songs, surely he had more than one drum kit on his drum machine. On the third track I noticed a bell-like sound, possibly a synthetic ride symbol that is featured on every track. Once noticed, my compulsive nature refused to let this go, and near the end of the album it was all I could hear,
distracting my attention woefully from the melodies and musicianship. Still, true R&B fans should not let my strange, obsessive hang ups deter them from going to their neighborhood Wooden Nickel and treating themselves to a truly fine R&B disc.
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