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Album Review: Imagination – Flashback: The Very Best of Imagination

3 min read

British soul legends Imagination have compiled a collection of 13 of their greatest hits from their peak as one of the most uplifting and flamboyant soul groups of the 80’s. The album is oozing with soul and pop tunes perfect for older fans to reminisce with the group, or for new fans to get a taste of Imagination at their best. To the delight of fans, the new album, known as Flashback: The Very Best of Imagination, also contains two new songs to enjoy. These are the first songs recorded by the trio in more than two decades.

ImaginationThe album begins with the soulful Body Talk from their 1981 album of the same name. The track sets the tone for the rest of the album with its dancey, soul beats and smooth voice of singer Leee John. The mood continues into In and Out of Love, a mellow yet catchy hit before a party vibe takes over in Flashback, both also from 1981’s Body Talk.

The dominance of their Body Talk album continues to show in this compilation, following on with the piano heavy Burnin’ Up, a track which has been described by the ‘Godfather of House Music’ Frankie Knuckles as an influential song in the development of the music style.

The next stage of the album draws out the best hits from 1982’s In the Heat of the Night, with Just an Illusion, Music and Lights, the namesake In the Heat of the Night, and Changes.

Showing the band’s dominance of the early 80’s, the album takes a funky turn with Looking at Midnight, a synth heavy electro pop track from their fourth album in three years Scandalous.

The upbeat classic hit New Dimension is up next from the same album, which shared its name with this single in the US.

Two of their biggest hits from 1984 and 1985 follow on, in Thank You My Love and Found My Girl, before The Art of Love rounds out the classic hits.

The album finishes with two new tracks, The Truth and Krash (All Nite Long), listed as Imagination featuring Leee John.

The Truth is a simple romantic ballad with a more subdued instrumental background than the band’s previous hits, showing off John’s vocals which more than hold up after such a long time.

The latter track, Krash (All Nite Long) is more similar to the previous Imagination style, full of pop, electro and soul energy which blends in so well to the classic Imagination sound it could almost go unrecognised as a new song.

Super fans will also be able to pre-order a deluxe digital version of the album, featuring three bonus tracks (Instinctual, Passion and Mighty Power) from July 29.

Flashback: The Very Best of Imagination is a solid definitive collection of Imagination’s greatest hits from the early 80’s where they were at their peak of musical dominance. The two new tracks are a bonus gift for fans who will likely appreciate the talent of the band who have still got it after all this time.