Retro soul is no longer retro. Which is to say, it's officially perennial. After Amy Winehouse and Mayer Hawthorne and Raphael Saadiq and Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings and Lee Fields and — oh, we could go on, but we won't — mined that throwback territory to often wonderful effect, a time-frozen style has completely thawed.
Michael Fitzpatrick, AKA Fitz, is as reverential as any of those artists. Maybe more so. And so he brings his organ, his honeyed white-man yelp and his five-piece crew to create another loving homage that bubbles over with energy and warm feelings. Fitzpatrick is channeling a particular strand of Motown on his debut — that early Temptations sound, which leaned heavily on bass thwacks and mingling vocals. Noelle Scaggs, an alternately breathy and booming singer, supports Fitz like a Supreme on loan. Fitz' subject matter — gold diggers, shady politicians, heartbreakers — is hardly innovative, but its dependable fodder for earth-shaking R&B. And Pickin' Up The Pieces — recorded in Fitzpatricks' Los Angeles living room! — fits comfortably into a new old sound, affirming itself without ever sounding like its trying too hard.