Rock Candy Funk Party - Groove Is King

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Provogue Music
Produced by Tal Bergman

As far as musical outfits go, 40 odd years ago, Rock Candy Funk Party's jazz, funk, dance and fusion mixture would not have been so unique. But in 2015, being a band that is as musically audacious as the name Rock Candy Funk Party, means being something very special indeed. Groove Is King is the latest release from RCFP and features the same core line up as We Want Groove, along with the introduction of a collaborative horn section arranged by trumpeter Randy Brecker.

Comparing Groove Is King to We Want Groove, while this release is not quite as charming and infectious as it’s predecessor, it's far more expansive sounding, trading some of it's jazz fusion styling for more of a dance and disco feel. Sonically it's a lot more mature, though it does lack a little of the addictiveness of We Want Groove. Tracks like Don't Be Stingy With The SMPTE could easily be mistaken for a '70s disco number, and Digging In The Dirt shows a more sensitive side to the band during it’s melodic breakdown sections.

The core members of the band fire on all cylinders on this release. The ever-talented Tal Bergman (who also produces) on drums fuels the band with his seemingly limitless knowledge of different styles, lending itself to wealth of tracks on offer. Mike Merrit is equally as impressive on bass; his pocketed grooves combined with Bergman's handy work are the cause of RCFP's dominantly funky rhythm section. As for Joe Bonamassa, it is no secret that he is arguably the most well known member of the band, yet Ron DeJesus' contribution is just as important. His more rhythmically conscious and bright sound is an excellent counterbalance to Bonamassa's smokey chops. Both of the guitarists play climaxes on Don't Funk With Me, with Joe in particular laying down a tremendous solo that showcases an awareness of scales and modes that many of his blues followers would be surprised to hear. Yet with all of that in mind, arguably one of the biggest contributions to Groove Is King is the horn section. They not only bring depth and a jazz-like quality, but are also another voice with which many tracks are led.

Groove Is King is an album that witnesses Rock Candy Funk Party moving in a slightly different direction than their previous release. However, for a band whose sole design is, for lack of a better word, jamming, a change in sound is hardly a critic. It's a wonderfully expansive sounding album that any funk will adore and is as musically gifted as it is fun.

“ more of a dance and disco feel ”

Tracklist: Lost (Why Should I Be Frightened By A Hat?) / Under The Pillow / Addicted / Caterpillar And The Barbed Wire / Saturate Me / Afloat / Discard Your Fear / Towards The Blue Horizon / Time Travellers / Found (The Unexpected Flaw of Searching)

Written by James Abel
More: 2015, Albums, Fusion, Rock, ,

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