After last year’s comeback-level success with their album “7…” – including tour dates with Prince and Jill Scott/Anthony Hamilton, plus two Grammy nominations through its Kelly Price collaboration -- St. Paul’s resilient R&B band Mint Condition isn’t wasting any time releasing the follow-up. “Music @ the Speed of Life” comes out today via Shanachie Entertainment, with the coolly slow-bopping single “Believe in Us” leading the way (video posted below).
The band struck a deal with hometown retailer Target to carry physical copies of the record. You can buy it online or just listen to a stream of all 13 tracks over at the AOL Music site. Brother Ali, DJ Jazzy Jeff and fellow Jam & Lewis associate Bobby Ross Avilia make guest appearances in different songs, while longtime Prince band member Eric Leeds arranged the horns. Both Ali and Leeds can be heard in the album's more contemplative, Curtis Mayfield-ian, Minnesota-weathered closing track, "SixFortyNine / Changes," one of the highlights.
Leeds and the newly minted M Factory Horns (also with Brad Shermock and Mike Nelson) will be performing with the band at its release party at First Avenue on Sept. 28. First Ave is where Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis “discovered” the band 23 years ago, two years before they stormed the charts with "Breakin' My Heart (Pretty Brown Eyes)." Here's to at least 23 more years.