Posts

Showing posts with the label funk

NICK HEYWARD - "NORTH OF A MIRACLE" 1983

Image
NICK HEYWARD "NORTH OF A MIRACLE"   1983     WHEN IT STARTED TO BEGIN - The opening track is an orchestral based, breezy Pop song, similar to Nick's former band Haircut 100 but more accomplished in style.   BLUE HAT FOR A BLUE DAY - One of my favourite 80s songs not just by Nick.  A minimal, melodious Pop ballad, with a memorable chorus and great lyrics proving Nick was a very underrated songwriter and possibly still is.  Lovely song.     TWO MAKE IT TRUE - A track with a slight Country twang interspersed with some bright jazzy Pop.  Another great tune.   ON A SUNDAY - Reminds me a little of The Police and Men At Work with a little of The Cars, almost Reggae Pop Rock.  Sophisticated and classy. CLUB BOY AT SEA - Lots of different orchestral and effects but this is probably my least favourite on the album, its a slow tempo kind of Pop ballad.  On such a great debut album this is probably my filler. WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND - A sim

PRINCE - "CONTROVERSY" 1981

Image
PRINCE  "CONTROVERSY" 1981 CONTROVERSY - Prince's 4th album is said to have bridged the gap from the sexual energy of "Dirty Mind" to the Funk Rock Dance phenomenon created on "1999".  The album opens with the epic 7 minute Dance title track.  Its pumping funky beat along with delightful keyboard harmonising keeps the energy flowing throughout.  Prince acknowledges the so called "controversies" and pretty much blatantly spells it all out about the pre-conceptions about him "am I black or white, straight or gay?" and also culture in general.  It didn't chart in the UK on release but made number 5 a mere 12 years later! SEXUALITY - Another funky Dance number with Prince declaring that "sexuality is all we ever need".  Of course everybody must dance as well! A great track and glides along nicely with Prince's trademark sexually charged spueals adding cheekiness, eroticism, or whatever the listener takes from it.   D

WHOWho - "OH YEAH" 2015

Image
WHOWho   "OH YEAH"  2015   SINCERELY YOURS - I first reviewed this great South Korean Electronic Rock band in 2012 in a minor feature before my blog was solely album reviews.  This is the debut album and is an absolute gem.  This first track is a mix of Funk, New Wave, Synth Rock and Pop.  This is such a unique sound, merging genres all over the place.  Brilliant opening. DANCE IN THE RAIN - Another great funky track which reminds me a little of The Police but with harder searing guitar solos!  A storming song and the mix of Electronic Synth style with Rock leanings is pretty ingenious. OH YEAH -  The title track begins like a typical Dance Pop track with a pumping beat.  Then the 80s style Synth Pop comes in followed by some guitars and its a completely different song than it was in the beginning.  Its classic Europop style "oh oh" chanting and simple chorus just make it even better. HER - This is one of the first songs I heard from the band and I loved it on

PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION - "AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY" 1985

Image
  PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION "AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY" 1985 AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY - The title track opens up this 7th album by Prince and the second official set with The Revolution.  It is a Psychedelic Pop track with various distorted backing vocals and effects that give the scene as being 60s hippie time. It's a great easy going opener that is both spiritual and experimental.   PAISLEY PARK - The second single to be lifted from the set and reaching number 18 in the UK chart.  It is more like late 60s Progressive Rock than the previous uptempo "Raspberry Beret" and surprisingly went higher.  I always liked this song, its a little off key, its sound is like nothing I heard before and the chorus is strangely catchy. CONDITION OF THE HEART - An anthemic epic Prince ballad, coming in at almost 7 minutes.  Mostly piano backing with various choral vocals.  Prince uses his full range here and for me its a little long and not up there with the best ballads by

THE TIME - "THE TIME" 1981

Image
  THE TIME   "THE TIME" 1981 GET IT UP - Although this debut album by the Prince proteges is basically a Prince recording (all instruments except a Dr Fink synth solo on "Cool") , Morris Day does sing the vocals.  The Time became a popular live band on Prince tours and became a band in their own right.  This opener is a funky soul workout with keyboards and guitar solos at the fore.   GIRL - A pretty basic slow soul ballad, sadly the vocals of Morris Day cannot lift this like Prince probably could.  Average track. AFTER HI SCHOOL - In the vein of Prince's quirky fast paced sparse funky tracks such as "Gotta Stop (Messin' About)" and "Jack U Off".  Its a decent song but nothing great despite being written by former Prince guitarist, Dez Dickerson. COOL - 10 minutes of classic Prince Funk, a throbbing beat, the aforementioned Dr Fink synth solo make this a very "cool" track indeed.  Best track on the album for me.  Co-written

PAUL YOUNG - "NO PARLEZ" 1983

Image
  PAUL YOUNG “NO PARLEZ” 1983 COME BACK AND STAY - A cover of Jack Lee’s 1981 song opens this debut album by one of the best voices in music.  This is a Soul track with an updated New Wave style.  This fourth single from the album reached number 4 in the UK chart following on the success of "Wherever I Lay My Hat (That's My Home)".   LOVE WILL TEAR US APART - A great, updated cover of Joy Division's 1980 classic.  The elements are still there from the original with Paul giving it a Soul update  WHEREVER I LAY MY HAT (THAT'S MY HOME) - The fantastic track that got me listening to Paul regularly.  Such a great vocals on this track. First recorded by Marvin Gaye in 1962 this rendition got Paul his first number 1 in the UK and set him on the way for a great 80s and long standing career. KU KU KURAM A - A madcap 80s Synth Pop/New Wave track reminiscing Nik Kershaw or Howard Jones.  Its engaging but an experimental mish mash and wastes Paul's voice hidden in the

SPANDAU BALLET - "DIAMOND" 1982

Image
SPANDAU BALLET  "DIAMOND" 1982 CHANT NO 1 (I DON'T NEED THIS PRESSURE ON) - The band's second album opens with the first single released from it.  It reached number 3 in the UK chart and although keeping with the Medieval sound of the debut album this track is New Wave funky Disco! Add the catchy chorus to this sublime 80s track and its a gem. INSTINCTION - One of my favourite Spandau tracks, although a little repetitive it is anthemic funky New Wave Pop at its best.  Tony Hadley's booming vocal gives it an extra lift as usual. Released as the fourth single reaching number 10 in the UK. PAINT ME DOWN - This is a repetition that I don't hink caught on as musch as other 80s tracks.  It isn't one of my favourites but its chorus can be annoyingly stuck in your head.  A New Wave "filler" although strangley released as a single.  It only reached number 30 in the chart and surprisingly was released before "She Loved Like Diamond", a far su

SUGABABES - "ONE TOUCH" 2000

Image
SUGABABES   "ONE TOUCH" 2000 OVERLOAD - This debut album recored by the original three members as teenagers, was a brilliant first set.  This opening track was smooth, R 'n B/Funk with a throbbing steady drumbeat and some almost lazy, but engaging vocals.  The single reached number 6 in the UK chart and was a storming introduction to the girl group's career, as powerful an ear opener as Spice Girls' "Wannabe". ONE FOOT IN - This song is pretty much a straight forward 90s style Pop song in the vein of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera in their fledgling days.  A very accomplished track although a comedown from the opening track, it still has merit. SAME OLD STORY - Another very smooth and mature track that you would believe it from Destiny's Child or maybe TLC not by 3 teenage girls.  This is a cool funky song with some really nice harmonies. JUST LET IT GO - Again a song that the previous aforementioned seasoned girl groups would be proud of.

PRINCE - "BATMAN" 1989

Image
PRINCE  "BATMAN" 1989 THE FUTUR E - Prince's 11th studio album was a soundtrack to the film of the same name starring Michael Keaton.  Not a soundtrack score but tracks Prince wrote to accompany the film and his own ideas and a new persona, Gemini.   I think the album is underrated  by many and this opening track is a funky styled Electronic Pop track with a pumping beat and a genius spoken but catchy chorus. ELECTRIC CHAIR - One of my favourite tracks, the guitar is amazing on this.  A screeching rocker similar to Prince's early late 70s days.  Very cool. THE ARMS OF ORION - A beautiful sounding slow ballad duet with Sheena Easton. Not many fans' favourites but I love the sweet sound of this.  A contrast to the last duet, the upbeat "U Got The Look".  The third single from the album and reached number 27 in the UK CHART.  PARTYMAN - Another tongue in cheek classic from Prince, it is fun, quirky and funky as hell.  Awesome track and again criminally i

JACK SAVORETTI - "EUROPIANA" 2021

Image
  JACK SAVORETTI  "EUROPIANA" 2021 I REMEMBER US - Jack's seventh studio album opens with this unusual merging of Europop and an orchestral Rock ballad.  Containing childlike harmonised voices and Jack's emotional throaty vocals.  A really nice song.  Anthemic and 80s-like. SECRET LIFE - Another genre explored here, Jack gives us some midtempo Dance music with a throbbing, steady drumbeat similar to late 80s, early 90s clube hits.  WHO'S HURTING WHO (featuring Nile Rodgers) - Co-wriiten with Mark Ralph and the Chic legend Nile Rodgers.  A catchy, memorable chorus intertwines a great retro 70s funky Disco feel.  Great track.   WHEN YOU'RE LONELY (featuring John Oates) - This track includes another star of the 80s, one half of Hall & Oates!.  The song has a slight Latin feel and is a laid back slow Pop ballad.  It reminds me of Wet Wet Wet in their heyday.  MORE THAN EVER - A slow, piano led ballad that Jack lifts to new heights with some impassioned, emot

MADONNA - "MUSIC" 2000

Image
MADONNA  "MUSIC" 2000 MUSIC - Madonna's eighth album for me, is her last really great album in my opinion.  This opening track was released as the second single form the album following "American Pie" (which was later added to certain versions of the album) and reached the accustomed number 1 spot in the UK chart once again.  A supercharged Pop track mixing Funk, Electronica, Dance and Disco it is one of Madonna's best tracks.  Featuring the infamous "Ali G" in the video it was a hit all over the globe. IMPRESSIVE INSTANT - Not one of my favourites, a bit too many effects and the vocoder vocals for me.  It is a mishmash of Electro Funk and Pop and doesn't really grab the listener either lyrically or musically. RUNAWAY LOVER - A frenetic William Orbit co-written and produced track that has potential, the chorus could be catchier if the backing wasn't so overpowering, it becomes an instrumental drum and bass track with vocals way back in t

PRINCE - "LOVESEXY" 1988

Image
 PRINCE  "LOVESEXY" 1988   EYE NO - This 10th studio album by Prince addresses the battle between good and evil, Lovesexy and Spooky Electric and tries to justify the Black Album pull put. Lyrically that's what it is about but the musical backing is a mix of Funk, various orchestration, mismatched sounds and various yelps and screams.  This overpowers the actual message.  Not my favourite Prince track and one of the throwaways for me (1 per every genius 10 I might add!) ALPHABET ST. - The first single from the album is a sparse funky beat with sprinkles of electric guitar solos.  Complete with a Cat Glover rap, the video contains various hidden messages saying basically, "don't buy the Black Album, I'm sorry".  The song actually works and the 12" version is even better.  It is basic and unlike anything else that was around at the time.  It reached number 9 in the UK chart.  Great track. GLAM SLAM - Another criminally ignored single, only reaching

NICK HEYWARD - "POSTCARDS FROM HOME" 1986

Image
  NICK HEYWARD "POSTCARDS FROM HOME" 1986 MOVE IT UP - The second solo album Nick Heyward opens up with the same funky Jazz Blues style of his debut, "North Of A Miracle".  It's an upbeat catchy track that is a great intro to the album. OVER THE WEEKEND - The first single to be released from the album only reached number 43 in the UK chart.  It is in similar vein to his previous group (Haircut 100) music style.  It is pure stright out Pop with a slight Motown feel.   GOODBYE YESTERDAY - This second single reached the ridiculous number 82 in the UK chart.  One of the most underrated songwriters had such a rough deal in the UK chart.  It's a laid back, almost summery track with some beautiful melodies and an infectious, catchy chorus.   AGAIN IN MY HEART - This isn't one of my favourites and is a slight disappointment, the man who penned "Whistle Down The Wind", this is a slow ballad that really goes nowhere. WE'VE ALL BEEN KISSED - Nick

PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION - "PARADE" 1986

Image
PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION    "PARADE" 1986 CHRISTOPHER TRACY'S PARADE - This album is also the soundtrack to Prince's second movie "Under The Cherry Moon".  This opening track is a whimsical almost fairgound sounding intro to his character.  It pretty much carries on the Psychedelic style of the previous album "Around The World In A Day" NEW POSITION - A mainly percussive track with Prince basically saying his woman needs a "new position", which we can all guess in what manner! As with a few of these tracks this is experimental and would appear fleetingly over scenes in the film. I WONDER U - A repetitive vocal fronts a strange percussive backing with a little guitar twinkling sporadically.  For some reason this album is a lot of Prince's fans' favourite, but it lacks quality songs in my opinion and is a soundtrack album with a few gems. UNDER THE CHERRY MOON - The title of the film and actually I quite like this track.  The f

MICHAEL JACKSON - "BAD" 1987

Image
  MICHAEL JACKSON "BAD" 1987   BAD - The famous title track has a repetitive pumping Electronic dance beat, with a funky Pop influence.  Its slightly edgier sound and denouncing gang wars gave Michael a new army of fans after the straight Disco Funk of "Off The Wall" and Pop Soul Funk of "Thriller".  Michael carries the melodies with various vocals and a catchy chorus with the odd sprinkling of sparkly keyboard moments.  Supposedly a duet with Prince but he turned it down after the line "your butt is mine" and he wanted no part of it! THE WAY YOU MAKE ME FEEL - A favourite of mine.  Its funky and catchy and has some great Rhythm and Blues melodies that take it to a higher level of Pop song.  Orchestral segements back up the laid back beat and Michael's vocals again stand out.  Great song and a Jackson classic.   SPEED DEMON - A very experimental track and confusing, it can't decide if it wants to be an 80s Pop Rock track or an Electro

PRINCE - "1999" 1982

Image
PRINCE "1999" 1982   1999 - Prince's iconic fifth album was years ahead of its time, apart from the obvious title , this set paved the way for what was to come, the genre experimentations corssing boundaries. This opening title track was immense, it was a fun, funky, disco dancing tune.  The fact that the lyrics were incredibly dark and concerning the end of the world didn't matter.  Prince just told us to party while the workd was burning! It was Funk Synth Pop, Disco and a little New Wave.  A classic.  Everybody's got a bomb but dance! LITTLE RED CORVETTE - This was the track that got me hooked completely on the great man.   The epitomy of Prince, this was another storming track.  The fusion of Rock, Funk and Dance were to be his trademark.  Throw in the obligatory seductive lines and sexual innuendos, this was just a masterpiece.  An MTV classic and rightly so.   DELIRIOUS - A quirky, quick fire, Jazzy styled squeaky keyboards and dance beat track.  It is b

PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION- "PURPLE RAIN" 1984

Image
PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION "PURPLE RAIN" 1984 LET'S GO CRAZY - It's memorable opening line, "Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today..." well you all know the rest! A powerhouse of a track, blistering guitar solos and a backdrop of spiritual spoken words about God and all things religious.  Just a superb track which has many "air guitar" moments for the wannabe Rock stars, even though by their blinkered standards he was never thought of as a Rock guitarist...quite ridiculous in my opinion. TAKE ME WITH U -  A sultry Pop ballad sung with Apollonia Kotero.  Jill Jones, Wendy and Lisa sung on backing vocals to add "sexy fullness" to Apollonia's vocal.  It was released as a double A side with "Let's Go Crazy" and was often played on the radio as an alternative.  Allegedly it was going to appear on an Apollonia album.   Romantic, sultry and sexy, all in the best possible Prince taste! THE