Saturday, February 7, 2009
Mustang Sally astride a unicorn
Shuggie Otis - Here Comes Shuggie Otis (lala) I will confess to never having investigated Shuggie Otis past the Inspiration Information re-issue, whose presence and immediate ascendancy from never-heard-of-him to you-must-hear-this made me rethink the nature of the lost classic. It was as if Mustang Sally appeared during a fever dream astride a unicorn, beckoning let me show you the Way. And while Inspiration is airtight in its soul-cadelica splendor, I am completely digging his looser debut Here Comes Shuggie Otis - a meeting of Moody Blues orchestral moves, soft rock contours and blues of all hues - from Chicago to Memphis to Delta. You and me both wish life sounded as good as "Bootie Cooler."
Earth Wind & Fire - s/t (lala) Maybe I've never really sat down and listened to Earth Wind & Fire before, outside of the disco hits that dominated my youth. I don't think its quite as potent as Last Days & Time from the other day, but its still better than everything else in the Universe right now. The closing number "Bad Tune" is the sound of Hannibal and his elephants crossing the towers of Cabrini Green, the archangel Gabriel reducing the El to twisted metal. Funk brings on the best apocalypses.
The O'Jays - Ship Ahoy (lala) Everyone has "For the Love of Money" off this O'Jay's album in their sonic DNA, but I am among the unschooled who have yet to, until just now, witness their threnody for the victims of slavery, poverty, and oppression that is the title track.