From: Bob Davis (earthjuice_at_prodigy.net)
Date: 2004-05-05 05:15:52
You may not quite understand why I am reviewing the first album here, hopefully by the time
you reach the end of this you will....
* ROLLING STONES - STILL LIFE
Still one of my very favorite live albums. Starting out with the 30 seconds of Duke
Ellington's "A Train", before "Under My Thumb" comes in to damn near blast the needle right
off the groove, to the SLAMMIN cover of Smokey Robinson and the Miracles "Going To A Go Go"
(which sometimes I put on repeat and let it go for like 15 straight times.....lol) more great
covers of "Time Is On My Side", the Temptations "Just My Imagination" and this album, which
gets mixed reviews from so called "rock critics" has been one of my secret pleasures for many
years. I know that some folks want to think of the Rolling Stones a "culture bandits", but for
my money they have always acknowleged the true roots of their music.
* ZOOTZILLA - P'n ALL OVER THE PLACE
I was fully prepared not to like this CD. I figured that here we go again, yet another "p-funk
clone experiment gone horribly worng in the laboratory". However "P'n All Over The Place"
takes the basic P-Funk thang and rises above the crowd of the typical "p-funk clone experiment
gone horribly worng in the laboratory". Normally with these efforts I find myself hitting the
fast forward button long before the first song is over and within 5 minutes I have heard just
enough of each track to know that the entire CD sucks. What caught my attention was the fact
that the CD starts out with something quite unexpected (much like Still Life does) with some
classical music before segueing in to the title track "P'n All Over The Place", a seering
piece of "funk/rock". Next up is some Frank Zappaish stuff entitled appropriately enough
"BullSh*t". At this point I am just about ready to condem this CD to my "P-Funk Clone Waaayyy
Too Much Guitar Pile" and then comes track #3 called "Hot Spank (Pimp Stew and Monkey Woo)"
which is an awesome track that would make Bootsy proud! Next up is an instrumental song called
"11125", which is a serious homage to late 1970's Parliment Funkadelic and could easily be a
dance floor hit right now if club DJ's were bold enough to play it. The next song is called
"Wolf Whistles and Cat Calls", which features Micheal Hampton joining Zootzilla and taking us
straight into Maggot Brain Territory" only they are joined by a young lady who sounds kinda
like one of the Mary Jane Girls, and takes this slow/funky/guitar driven ballad into a
hypnotic-erotic zone. Anyhow, without reviewing each and every track here I think that I've
given you enough that if you are a P-Funk fan, that you can safely buy this CD and know that
when you get it home, you won't have to worry about which pile to put it in.
* JIMY BLEU - JIMY BLEU DOES JIMI HENDRIX
(Funk/Rock/Latin/Blues/Rap/Slow Jams from another planet)
I dunno if this CD will ever be commercially available, because of some of the obvious legal
issues. However if you ever see it anywhere, you should automaticly pick it up without even
thinking about it. It's one of the best & most creative CD's I have heard this year. It was
sent to me by a cat named "Jimy Bleu", who performs a Hendrix tribute show in NYC. What he
does here is to take some of the most famous songs in the Hendrix catalog and completely
destruct/reconstruct them in ways and styles that could only have come from someone with a
totally twisted mind :). For example, he takes WHO KNOWS, gives it a super badd "gangsta rap"
spoken word intro and then proceeds into a raw funk tribute to the original. Or how about the
cover of CAN YOU SEE ME, which in the hands of of "Jimy Bleu", sounds like it's being played
by Santana. Or how about STRAIGHT AHEAD, done in such a way to make it sound like it belongs
on a Doobie Brothers album? Other covers are more straightforward. VOODOO CHILD, FREEDOM and
others are straight covers demonstrating that "Jimy Bleu" is quite a bit more competent than
the average Hendrix imitator. In fact I would say that he is an excellent guitar player,
however the vocals are a little weak. All total there are 27 Hendrix covers here, some are
full songs, some are 1 min versions. On the CD cover it says that it's intended to be the
soundtrack to a movie. One can only wonder....
* DA PHATFUNK CLIQUE - DA PHATFUNK CLIQUE
Imagine if you could combine the sound of the Mahavishnu Orchastra, Bootsy Collins,
Blackbyrds, Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five and Noel Pointer? Well you don't have to
imagine it, you can just check out Da Phatfunk Clique. I'll have much more about this NY based
Funk band in the coming weeks and months, so stay tuned...
* STOZO THE CLOWN - DIG DONZ
Well, well, well Ronald 'Stozo' Edwards the world famous P-Funk artist, sometime NYC promoter
and probably the biggest Shuggie Otis fan on the internet (this side of yours truly) has been
promising this CD for quite a while now and I finally have it in my hands. I open up the CD
and see that Stozo has written me & Soul-Patrol a very nice message and also hand drawn one of
his famous Stozo logos right on the label of the CD itself and I smile. Then I put it into the
CD player and say to myself....."whoa this is some wild sh*t, that sounds like the Temptations
on acid..." Next song "sounds like James Brown fried, dyed and laid to the side in a pool of
Then I pull out the liner notes and it all starts to make sense to me.... It's Electronica!
And much like another surprising CD of Electronica I recently reviewed (Tricky Dilemma) it
requires at least two listens to make sense. And when I get to song #4 STO ZODIAK (Digi Donz),
all is right with the world because now I realize that right here Stozo is doin his own
version of INSPIRATION INFORMATION, and that is kinda what this CD is all about. Another look
at the liner notes reveals that on song #1 RONALD WUZ A ROLLIN STONE, Stozo uses "Shuggie's
original funk box" and that makes me smile as well. The lower center of the "gatefold liner
notes" reveals a computer running a sound editing program, revealing the true roots of this
album which does an excellent job of combining original electronic music, samples and live
instrumentation. In the liner notes Stozo credits artists like Shuggie, James Brown, Miles
Davis & Public Enemy as inspirations and I can certainly hear them all in this well crafted CD
that while not for everyone, will certainly be on my playlist in 2004.
* CLINTON ADMINISTRATION - "TAKING YOU HIGHER" (SONGS OF SLY AND THE FAMILY STONE)
This is the latest CD from the Clinton Administration and after the sucess of their last CD of
P-Funk covers, they decide to tackle the legacy of Sly & the Family Stone on their next
outing. The big difference between this one and their first CD is sylistic. On their first
CD called "One Nation Under a Re-Groove", the Clinton Administration takes the P-Funk legacy
from a Jazz-Funk perspective. For this tribute to the legacy of Sly and the Family Stone, they
view Sly's greatest hits from a Funk-Rock perspective. It isn't as immediatly accessible as
"One Nation Under a Re-Groove", if you don't like Funk-Rock, then you won't like this CD
untill you take your second listen thru and then it will start making sense to you...
* SLAPBAK - GHETTOLOGY
This CD originally came out a couple of years ago under the title "Return of the Fast Food
Funkateers". I never got around to writing a review of the CD back then, but I liked it then
and I still like it now under it's new title. It's exactly the same CD and it's well worth
buying. Back in the early 1990's when I heard Slapbak's first CD called "Fast Food
Funkateers", I thought that they sounded about 10-15 years behind the times. Which was great
for me, because I thought that they sounded like the late 70's - early 80's P-Funk Mob.
Ghettology also sounds like it's about 10-15 years behind the times. Which is also great for
me, because they incorporate just enough rap to saound like the "G-Funk" of the early 1990's.
So depending on just how you like your funk, I can easilly reccomend "Ghettology".
* DODGE - STARBASS INVASION
* SEVEN ELEVEN - HOT N' FUNKY
These two CD's were so similar to each other both musically and in the design of the CD
covers, so I decided to do a little research and discovered that they are both put out by the
same European company and share some of the same musicians. Let me say this much.... If you
are looking for some serious party music in the mold of Kool & the Gang, Crown Heights Affair,
Fatback Band, Heatwave, Bootsy Collins, etc then you could do far worse than these two CD's.
They even feature guest stars like Fred Wesley and Slapbak's Jara Harris. Are you having a
party at your crib anytime soon? Put these two CD's on and keep your friends dancin
So does all of this sound like some good stuff?
Last year was a relativly weak year for new FUNK music.
So far this year looks like a plethora of riches!!!!
--Ronald 'Stozo' Edwards
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