This 2005 album is so funky it hurts!!! If you adore the powerful horn-driven funk of Kool & The Gang, The Dazz Band, Average White Band and the J.B.s, then this CD contains all you could need. Also, we have a peppering of classy vocals, the best of which is the gorgeously seductive Joaquina Mitchell and her superb “Giving My All To You”. Trombone, flugelhorn and sax is deployed with aplomb throughout this album, and the Chicago flavour really comes through nicely. Mind you, there is a healthy, if mere, taste of the Brazilian scene on the opening salvo of “Windy City” which is quite nice to boot. The J.B.s really spring to mind with the awesome stepper, “Something For The People”, complete with funky chant and “Hot Pants Road” styled keyboard riff. Talking of riffs, the chaps link up with excellent vocalist, Mauri Sevier, on the chunky, yet laid back “Change”. The shuffling, heavy beat is easily restrained by a Rhodes keyboard and sax solo. Mauri appears again with the seductive and sexy “Tonight’s The Night” and showcases some superb flugel horns courtesy of Ron Haynes. “Let’s Go To Work” smacks of the The J.B.’s and really is great.
“Giving My All To You” is a top-drawer ballad with some sensational musical accompaniment that is both soulful and haunting. The lazy, almost drunken horns are spine tingling and this lady really does have a sexy voice. I love her tender, breathless and passionate approach and she soars like an eagle over this sexy, teasing clapping beat. The aloof horns and Latin guitar help make this one hell of an essential song. I would recommend this album on the strength of this CD alone, to be honest! This is hotly pursued by my favourite uptempo track, “Shakedown”. This is a real rump shaker and can’t help but make you feel funky. One word of advice – play it LOUD! The irresistible guitar riff and Wah-Wah buoys mood especially. The sax on this track throws me back to the Mizell Brothers work, too, and that ain’t bad either! Steve Butler and Ron Haynes have really come up trumps in their work here, and I don’t think anyone with any rhythm or soul in their bones will not fail to feel the groove on this CD. I would like to see much more from this collaboration and hope that the sexy Joaquina return to thrill us also. Head over to CD Baby and pick this up – you will not regret it.
The Vibe Scribe