The title What Up Dog? begs the reviewer to open his comments with: Well, I'll tell you what up. These are two goofy guys (David and Don) from Detroit who make jumping dance tempo R&B with a heavy touch of zany lyrics - sort of Chic meets Jonathan Richman. Lead vocalists Sir Harry Bowens and Sweet Pea Atkinson sound as sweet and soulful as Little Anthony fronting the Imperials (Somewhere In America There's A Street Named After My Dad, Love Can Be Bad Luck, Anything Can Happen, Wedding Vows In Vegas). The two crooners will have you thinking that you're listening to Motown's Greatest Hits. The straight-up dance numbers (Spy In The House Of Love, Out Come The Freaks, Robot Girl, Walk Like A Dinosaur) are robust and rhythmic. Pop the CD in your car player and do the funky chicken (or whatever it's call this week) on your drive to work. I was in tears when the clubs stopped playing this stuff about 10 years ago.
What Up Dog? is a jaunting dance grove, but what pushes the CD into the realm of masterpiece is the lyrical craziness. `Somewhere In America' there is a quiet neighborhood with "no saber-tooth neighbors" and "no day care Felinis." In `Spy In The House Of Love' the spy admits "I used a tiny camera - I thought I'd Japanese her." `11 MPH' is a funky composition about assignation. `Anytime Lisa' is the town tramp whom David and Don treat with compassion. And the grand finale is the cynical `Dad I'm In Jail.' Must be heard to be appreciated. Danceable R&B with lyrics actually worth paying attention to. Contagious material.