Friday, 20 February 2009

Zapp - Zapp VI - 2002 - Zapp Town Records

Following the tragic deaths of Roger and Larry Trourtman at Easter 1999, the remaining brothers and band members stepped forward with a new album, Zapp VI - Back by popular demand. Opinion was divided on whether this CD was 'Zapp' enough. Well, each to their own, but as far as I was - and still am concerned - IT IS SUPERB. Yes, we know that the group will never be exactly the same again, but the legacy continues in the most splendid manner indeed. In fact, I would rate this album as highly as their Zapp IV album and that is saying something. If you bought the superb Max Flava CD back in 2000 then you will love the perfect mix of uptempo fun filled Funkers and bassy-sublime love jams. The album kicks off with a serious vocoder-filled Zapp Jam in "You’ve Got Mail" – described by the group and DJs alike as "Computer Love on steroids"! Essentially if you love "Computer Love" you will love this modern take based on the Internet and its opportunities for love. Don't bother, fellas. I've tried it and it does NOT work! I cannot recommend it enough and I thoroughly recommend the clarion call from band member Bigg Robb in the intro who asks us all to TURN THIS UP!!! Damn right I did and I’ve been pumping the volume up ever since!!!

Another funky bass-pin rumbler is the KILLER "Say You Will, Say You Won’t" which is, again, classic Zapp material. Roger and Larry must be swelling with pride with this material and rightly so. Sexy, sultry and the vocals are raw and ultra soulful. The ballad cut, "I Wanna Love You" features the impressive Keith Leak on vocals and Zapp Troutman on talkbox. A massive smile broke over my face when I heard "She’s About To Roll" because it smacks so much of classic early 80s Zapp jams – "More Bounce To The Ounce" and stuff of that calibre. I just love it!
The cheerful tapper, "The Way You Walk And Move" is another credit and features a lovely vocalist in the fresh sounding Nicole Cottom. Zapp gets jazzy on "If You Would Love Me" and pay homage to their brother on the gentle "This Is Our Song To You". A real 80s outing follows with "Be With You Forever" with its mid 80s flavour, tinkly keyboard, guitar and vocoder. "Late Night Fantasy", "Zapp Is Back" and "Get Up Off The Wall" uphold the funkier side of the group and the album concludes on a really classy note with the Dale DeGroat led song "I’ve Finally Found What I’ve Been Searching For" which features the wonderful Shirley Murdock on backing vocals. This song will be adored not only by lifelong fans of the group, funksters as well as quality soul lovers. This CD is still available from CD Baby and I can do nothing but recommend it.

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe

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