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 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
\"I Get Lifted\" and \"Duck and Cover\"

Rating: 8.75/10 ?

June 7, 2007
As in fashion, trends in music tend to come and go, but the one thing that stays the same is basic worth. Although many believe soul-funk to be a style most naturally suited for the 1960s and '70s decades in which it was born, befitting to their new home on the Ubiquity label Orgone plays well enough to make listeners forget what era they are in and just enjoy the groove.

An oasis of good soul-funk in a modern-era of feeble imitators, Orgone recently issued a pair of limited 12-inch vinyl singles that include two funky, rhythmic, and powerful songs each. The band's overall pedigree is flashed in some form during each of the four collective tracks; they have backed up Pharcyde and Eddie Bo, shared a bill with James Brown, and had individual members perform in Breakestra and with Connie Price. Even purist soul heads would have to admit that this Los Angeles-based outfit has paid their dues and refined a sound reminiscent of the finer classic era R&B/funk house bands.

"I Get Lifted" b/w "It's What You Do"
Rating: 8.8/10 ?

The first of Orgone's catalog titles is UR-213 - "I Get Lifted" b/w "It's What You Do" - a pair of longer-running, midtempo vamped-up jams. Side A is "I Get Lifted," a cover of a song originally composed by members of KC and the Sunshine Band. Popping horns and curling, wah-wah guitar hooks give the song melodic credence but really the definitive sound is a constant, four-on-the-floor drumbeat that steps behind the impressive, belted vocal performance of Fanny Franklin. Further detail is crafted from spacey echo effects, tambourine, and Latin percussion.

The B side is "It's What You Do," a more colorful, upbeat afrobeat-funk song. Just as Fela Kuti and his band once did, Orgone occupies much of the composition with horn (tenor and baritone saxes, trumpet, trombone) dynamic interplay, solo organ breaks, and group choral chants. The J.B.'s-likened, clangy guitar sound is also a major funk factor, and makes this one a definitive foot-tapper.

"Duck and Cover" b/w "No More Gravy"
Rating: 8.7/10 ?

In length and creative complexity, UR-214 seems like a relative afterthought to the catalog title preceding it. "Duck and Cover" and "No More Gravy" are both around three minutes long and feature an instrumental style that is eerily similar to '70s New Orleans funkmasters The Meters. While most would decry The Meters as rhythmic inferiors to The J.B., no one would dare questions the former band's immense, lasting effect on the musical world. And this is the way that this 12-inch compares to the tracks on the "I Get Lifted" LP - different styles but still exceptional quality.

Both sides of this record are similar slow-tempo, meat-and-potatoes, no-frills funk. There are no horn parts here, and the center is focused on the interweaving of clean picked electric guitar, efficient bass, organ, and crafty drumkit and percussion. "Duck and Cover" and "No More Gravy" are instrumental songs - with progressions into verses, choruses, and bridges - just as much as they are jam outs of a tight funky quartet. With these two songs there is little to explain, but so much to enjoy.

Reviewed by Josh Zanger
Joshua Ian Zanger, a native of rural Chicago, rocks many a world with his writing, style, and generally sweet aroma.

See other reviews by Josh Zanger



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