This was one of the first albums that I ever bought
with my allowance, at age 12, for a whopping $5.99,
in the spring of 1976! ( It was the best of times!)
Actually, it was this album, Parliament's
"The Clones Of Dr. Funkenstein", and
Earth, Wind & Fire's "Gratitude"...all now classics!
I was already aware of Parliament / Funkadelic's previous works
from both my mother and older cousins who were all in their
20's then, and grooving to all this good funky music big time!
The main thing about Funkadelic was the "I-Don't-Give-A-Funk!!"
attitude of their music, the outlandish and cartoonish artwork
of their album covers from 1973's "Cosmic Slop" forward,
which were like little cryptic & naughty comic books to my
12 yr old mind. I remember putting it on the record player,
sitting in my favorite spot, which was on the big floor
pillows between the 4 large "quadraphonic" speakers,
and the opening track "Butt-To-Buttrescucitation" blew out
of them like a sonic tsunami!
I was offically a disciple of the P-Funk from that moment on! (-:
Now I know that alot of people don't get what the whole P-Funk
thing was about today, but you can't look & listen through
2009 eyes and ears. You have to understand the times---
Glam rock, elaborate stage extravaganzas, drugs, a free
spirited & open-minded young society that had tired of the
flower power of the late 60's, but was still rife with
rebellion, and game to breakdown social morays!
Though the concepts and the lyrics seem really out there
and silly, there was definitely a message within the madness!
P-Funk was full of symbolism, had it's own slangs and
catch phrases, and a real parallel ethos!
(See P-Funk Mythology) (Also Google "The Motherpage")
It was all based on the concept of black aliens of a higher
funky consciousness, who had returned to the earth ions later
to find it grooveless, uninspired, unoriginal, and most
heinously, unfunky!! Their mission was to raise the mindstate
of mankind and give them true freedom of mind, spirit,
and body through the booty-shakin' hum-drum breakin' force
of the HOLY P----Funk that is! (-:
You can't think in a linear stagnated way and understand
what the P-Funk was about!--You had to free your mind,
and let your azz follow suit!
Anywayz, back to the music...the highlights of this album were:
"Butt-To-Butt"--for it's sheer weirdness and that sick guitar
solo towards the end. which I don't know if it's the late
Eddie Hazel, Michael Hampton, or Ron Brykowski
(an unsung white member of the early funk mob!)
who was playing it, but whomever it was, they were killing it!
"Let's Take It To The People"--Just a groovy little clavinet & guitar
driven ditty that's short and sweet. I like the vocal arrangement and
overall attitude of the song, though it's quite nonsensical.
"Undisco Kidd" was just BAAADDD!!--Like the song says!
So dang funky with Bootsy bubblin' and thumpin' on his
mutron spacebass, Bernie "Da Vinci" Worrell creating whole
new soundscapes on synthesizers and piano that were then unheard of!
(Dr. Dre would capitalize off of them big time 20 yrs later!),
and ol' George signifying and recanting his tale of
"The Kidd V.S. The Freaky Little Groovy From The Funky Side Of Town"
in his cool laid back pre-hip hop era style!
"Take Your Dead Ass Home" gets a mention not for it's music,
but for it's rawkus chorus, which was a regular chant at P-Funk
shows, and it's naughty nursery rhyme style limericks
"There once was a man from Peru!"...etc.
Sounds harmless and silly by today's profane & in-your-face
standards, but it was taboo wicked stuff to my
12 yr old ears back then! (-:
"I'm Never Gonna Tell It" was an unusual approach,
chordally and vocally for a love song with a soulful & funky edge.
P-Funk wasn't so much into the schmaltzy syrupy romantic ballads
of the time, so they had to funk them up to make it fit
within their concept.
"Tales Of Kidd Funkadelic" was a 12 minute and 56 minute
experimental synthesizer opus by one of the unsung innovators
and geniuses of modern popular music!
Bernie "Da Vinci" "The Insurance Man For The Funk" Worrell
was well versed in the classical, jazz, R&B and rock idioms
on keyboards since the age of 5, when he composed his own
first concerto! Though the keyboard sounds sound outdated
by today's standards, remember this was all analogue stuff!--
So Bernie was literally creating his own sounds that nobody
else was using at that time, and pushing the envelope for
what the synthesizer could do!--Creating a language for pop,
rock, alternative, techno, and everything that came after it!
Just smoke you a good joint or take you a few sips of a
good drink, turn this up in your headphones or your speakers
and take the journey! (Go on!--Don't be scuuurrrd!)
Sparse, ominous, weird vocals, congas...POST MODERN TRIBALISM!!
Last but not least, is still a favorite of mine...
"How Do You View Yeaw?" is bascially metaphysical theory
in a slow sinewy funky grooved out 3 minute & 39 second sermon!
(Hear "LIBERATION" by Outkast, and you'll see where they got
the vibe of that song from!)
"Have You Ever Known Someone Who Takes Personal The Rain?"
"Sees His Glass Half-Empty, Rather Than Half-Full?"
Basically, how you see yourself inside manifests itself
in the result of your life's experiences!--FUNK IS ZEN!!
Bootsy thumpin', Bernie whizzin', the KF girls sounding like
space sirens, George and the boys musin' together in key!
This album sounds great digitally remastered, and is essential
if you are just discovering what the whole P-Funk Movement
was about and collecting crucial albums in it's
evolutionary development. Don't let the unfunky, stodgy,
Placebo Syndrome-effected hum-drums turn you from your path!
Discover the hidden fun, smokin' groove, and subliminal brilliance
that was THE PARLIAFUNKADELICMENT THANG!! Funk On Y'all!