Which artists appear on Mark Ronson’s new album Record Collection?
Released under the moniker Mark Ronson & the Business Int'l, DJ/songwriter/producer Mark Ronson's 2010 album Record Collection feels more like the work of an actual band, or at least a collective, and less like a DJ album of guest vocalists even though there are a plenty here. The band idea is further reinforced by the inclusion of vocalists Andrew Wyatt (Fires of Rome, Mike Snow) and Amanda Warner (MNDR) who appear throughout Record Collection. The two singers, Wyatt with his sanguine soulful croon and Warner with her robust diva wail, take the lead on several cuts and lend a more unified palette to Ronson's songs. Add to this that Ronson, who also takes to the vocal mic on several tracks, wrote or co-wrote most of the material here. Throw in the fact that he uses actual musicians more than samples, and you have a legit work of original music that still capitalizes on Ronson's deft beat and melody mixing turntable skills. Songs like the lead-off cut "Bang Bang Bang" featuring rapper Q-Tip and Warner should appeal to fans of Ronson's funk and electronic-music DJ taste while the Afropop infused "Somebody To Love" featuring Boy George and Wyatt is a catchy, rhythmically compelling modern soul tune. Of course, you do get a few choice star cameos here from the likes of Duran Duran's Simon LeBon on the title track and reclusive neo-soul singer D'Angelo on "Glass Mountain Trust," but they simply add to the inspired and creative vibe of the album. The ultimate irony and triumph of Record Collection, is that on an album all about how Ronson's own obsessive music tastes have defined his life, we finally hear him step away from the turntable and produce one of the best albums of his career.