With the line “A full tank of gas and an R&B station” (from the opening track, “Lover’s Vacation”), Paul Thorn sets the tone for his fourth full-length studio disc. A little Boz Scaggs here, some of Paul Carrack’s Ace/Squeeze there, Thorn settles into a groovy soul-pop R&B-fueled formula. Once the vibe takes you, you’ll feel that sly sadness that digs a crisp tempo and a sultry bass hop. It’s got that bluesy grin that snaps to life when the horns kick in, the familiar ache at the end of love’s cul de sac that only a funky wah-wah or slide guitar can soothe. Thorn bends these time-honored chops and a strong, gospel-tinged female chorus to his take on all the expected plot arcs within love, betrayal, infidelity and longing. A reliable storyteller, Thorn wants to know Are You With Me? Hey, it’s a hot summer and this blue-eyed, love-sick soul music, aching with longing, is a cool, smooth ride. So why not.