George Clinton and His Gangsters of Love
By James Calemine
The Funkadelic/Parliment legend and North Carolina native George Clinton recruited a plethora of talent--including Texas born Sly Stone--for this latest CD. Other musicians included on the CD are Santana, John Frusciante, Gary Shider, Gary Wright and many others.
"Ain't that Peculiar" with Sly Stone zeros in on modern day technology with old school funk that sounds fresh as a 2008 September morning. Clinton's baritone spoken word voice threads a soulful narration on "Never Gonna Give Up". The original Clinton composition "Mathematics of Love" veers towards a soft jazz genre. Clinton does a wonderful cover of the old Goodman/Leonard song "Let The Goodtimes Roll".
Clinton's cover of Curtis Mayfield's "Gypsy Woman" features Carlos Santana's soulful guitar licks in a laid back stew of song. "Heart Trouble" carries a contemporary R & B vibe that blows away any dust from Clinton's past. Clinton does not rely on his past on any of these songs. "One Day Will Come" conjures a Miles Davis resonance that straddles jazz and R & B genres. "Sway" features Belita Woods and continues a thread of contemporary R & B strands of music.
"Heaven", with RZA, comes closest to Clinton's old Parliment days, but RZA's rap injects a modern finesse into the mix. The final track, "Fever" highlights Sly Stone again and serves as strong testimony these two southern sons can still record vital music in an industry that perceives them as has beens. It should not be forgotten that both Clinton and Stone were raised in The South and they carried their own blend of gospel, funk, blues, jazz and R & B into their own indelible style across the world. We still want the funk...and George Clinton and His Gangsters of Love deliver...