To pop audiences, Ann Peebles is probably the one-hit wonder of "I Can't Stand the Rain" fame. But, in fact, she enjoyed a lengthy spell as legendary Memphis producer Willie Mitchell's female counterpart to Al Green. And before she retreated from the music business to raise a family, she had made her mark on the R'n'B field with the likes of "I'm Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down", "Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody's Home" and "99lbs". Now in her late 40s, she is back - and demonstrating that, like many another long-serving soul diva, she has kept her marvellous pipes in good working order. Her 1992 comeback Full Time Love essentially reprised the sophisticated poise of the Mitchell approach - right down to featuring the Hi Rhythm Section. But the current CD, Fill This World With Love, fuses this style with more modern, funkier sounds. While not totally successful - the long medley of some of her old numbers and some standards is less than indispensable - the record does demonstrate that husband Don Bryant has lost little of his song-writing ability, and also offers the treat of two duets with the wonderful, and even more experienced, Mavis Staples.

Roger Trapp