By 1975, when Tavares released In The City, they had already racked up a No. 1 R&B single and had two successful LPs to their name. In The City brought the band even more chart glory. Its lead single, the super-infectious "It Only Takes A Minute," helmed by the rising songwriting and production duo Brian Potter and Dennis Lambert, gave the band another US R&B chart-topper (it also reached No. 10 in the American pop chart). With its pulsating disco groove, the song showed that the band could handle uptempo material as well as warmly-harmonized ballads.
The album's other big hit was another driving uptempo cut: a disco-infused retooling of rock band The Edgar Winter Group's Dan Hartman-penned 1973 smash "Free Ride," driven by funky rhythm guitar and fronted by Tiny Tavares. It stayed true to the strident spirit and arrangement of the original and rose to No. 8 in the US R&B chart. The third and final hit off the album showcased Tavares' skills as balladeers, with a poignant, string-drenched slow jam about unrequited love called "The Love I Never Had" (No. 11 US R&B), featuring Chubby on lead vocals.
But In The City wasn't solely defined by its three hit singles. The album was consistently strong, its material ranging from vivid storytelling vignettes ("Fools Hall Of Fame") and mournful ballads ("In The Eyes Of Love" and "I Hope She Chooses Me," the latter with a doo-wop flavor) to slick, danceable grooves. Among the latter was the horn-peppered "Nothing You Can Do," featuring Butch's svelte vocal; the funkafied title song (written and sung by Butch and Pooch) with its slick harmonies; the anthemic "Ready, Willing And Able"; and the breezy "We Fit To A Tee."
Combining passion-drenched vocals with a well-balanced blend of romantic ballads and effervescent mirror ball grooves, In The City encapsulated the soulful essence of a super-talented band of brothers. Now available as a single LP on standard weight vinyl in celebration of Capitol Records' 75th anniversary.