"It is ashame when someone of Winwood's talent goes out on a creative limb and get eviscerated for it. I didn't dig this recording for some time after I got it, I must admit. But about two or three years after I picked this CD up, I actually listened to it and found such fully realized funk and soul brought together by some very talented people!! All I can say is give it another non-judgemental listen. I actually think that this recording is less 'pop' sounding that his more successful solo releases such as Roll With It & Back In The High Life.
My faves are SPY IN THE HOUSE..., JUST WANNA HAVE SOME FUN, LET YOUR LOVE COME DOWN (What a soulman!! And the backing vocals work for me!!), FILL ME UP, GOTTA GET BACK TO MY BABY, FAMILY AFFAIR (nice version)& PLENTY LOVE feat. Desiree (I believe this was the only single/minor hit from this CD). Why do artists have to constantly repeat themselves to be honored by fans of no imagination? And when they DO repeat themselves, these same fans tend to complain "been there, done that". I don't get it.
Give this one another try!!!"
Excellent Winwood that just fell through the cracks
E. LINDER | New York, NY USA | 06/16/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"While I am a big Winwood fan, I'm not above pointing out his less than stellar work, such as Refugees of the Heart, but this is definately not one of them.Some of Winwood's stuff falls between the rock&roll, r&b, and jazz format lines and never gets picked up. This album has a lot of those type of songs, so it never took off and was even considered a "failure" by some chart-orientated critics. But there are a lot of excellent songs and no duds. You really need to listen to the album as a whole as it is not a "singles" album. After a couple listens, you'll love it. In fact, I was just downloading songs from all my Winwood CDs for my .mp3 collection and I actually took more songs off this album than any other, it's that consistent and album-like.If you want a Winwood fan album comparison, it's better than Roll With It, Refugees, and his debut but not as good as Arc, Back in the High Life, or Talking Back."
Great CD from a legendary performer
E. Voorhies | United States | 07/18/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I disagreee strongly with most of the reviews I have read on here about this CD and i really don't understand. I first heard Steve on record on AM radio back in the 60's doing the hit song "Gimme Some Lovin" with the Spencer Davis Group and to this day I am impressed with that performance. Steve has dabbled in various musical styles and groups during his colorful career, but i think he's at this best when he's singing and playing an R@B/blues type of combination music. In other words.....he's great when he gets funky........and he gets funky on this
release in spades. To me it's the best he's ever sounded and played. "Spy in the House of Love" is an instant classic featuring steve on some very tasteful blues guitar licks. And
if "Just Wanna have Some Fun" and if "Fill Me Up" don't get your toes to tapping then you better check to make sure you're still
alive. It's true that there are no 15 minute spaced out jams on
here for those who want to get stoned and slobber all over their
love beads.....but I like it like that. I play this often in my
regular room in Yahoo voice chat and everybody loves it.....so
it's not just me. The production is clear and perfect contray to
what i read on here. I saw him do "Spy in the House of Love" on the Letterman TV show and was so impressed that I immediately bought the CD and wasn't disappointed....to say the least! You won't be either!"
An overlooked gem!
Bete Noire | Vancouver, Canada | 11/16/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Strangely enough some great albums tend to pass by unobserved-this is the case with Winwood's 1997 effort,'Junction Seven'.Outstanding musicianship,tight production,a few guest stars and,most importantly top-notch vocals from Steve Winwood seemingly have not been enough to make this album a hit.Yet it is an excellent opus featuring a great variety of styles,great grooves,and emotion.The closing track,'Lord of the Street'is a Steve Winwood classic."
As Good as Back in the High Life
Bete Noire | 02/21/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'm totally bemused by the poor reviews of this album - it is more poppy but so what - it's a 90's version of Back in the High Life ...the duet with Des'ree on Plenty Lovin' is great; the remake of Family Affair a favourite and Someone Like You is a great love song. If you are critic of Winwood because this doesn't stay with the roots I'm not sure how you could also be a fan of his Grammy winning music in the mid-80's. It also was commercial in nature - as this is. It sounds good, it makes you feel good and the music touches the heart and speaks to you. What more can you want. To the critics - this isn't earth breaking stuff but why must it be - it's music not the bill of rights!!!"