Thursday, April 12, 2012

218. Look ka py py- Probably the silliest name yet.

Album: Look-ka py py
Artist: The Meters
Year: 1969
Genre: Funk


1. Look-Ka Py Py
2. Rigor Mortis
3. Pungee
4. Thinking
5. This Is My Last Affair
6. Funky Miracle
7. Yeah, You're Right
8. Little Old Money Maker
9. Oh, Calcutta!
10. The Mob
11. 9 'Til 5
12. Dry Spell

It feels odd to say this about a funk album but Look Ka Py Py feels a bit aimless. Funk should drive. It should motor. It should put its foot to the floor and take you places in a hurry. It shouldn't get stuck in traffic or require a tyre change and need more oil. And it should never have fluffy dice hanging from the mirror or those stickers you see on the back window showing how many people are in its family.

Okay, I let that car analogy get away from me a bit and I apologise but the point still stands. Funk should drive. It should feel like there is someone like James Brown at the helm making the band really cook and forcing the listener to sit up and take notice. When you picture musicians playing funk you should see sweat on their forehead, feet moving with the rhythm and massive smiles on their happy faces. When I picture the Meters playing I imagine them laid back, untroubled by perspiration or unnecessary exertion. I can even imagine someone cleaning the studio when this album was recorded. If the studio needed a bit of a scrub the janitor could safely wander in while the Meters were playing. He'd tap his toes a bit and maybe feel the need to swoosh his broom with some sense of rhythm but at least he'd get some cleaning done. If someone tried to tidy up while James Brown was in the studio they would have flung down their cleaning gear, totally incapable of resisting the urge to leap about in a frenzy of funk induced power. Good funk does that to you.

The Meters are well regarded as funk pioneers who helped create the genre. Their music grooves along but it's too laid back to be really interesting and after a while becomes backing music. And who wants their funk to be aural wallpaper?

Highlight: The title track
Lowlight: The Mob

Influenced by: James Brown
Influenced: The Temptations

Favourite Amazon Customer Review Quote:  "It's very funky, a little cheesy (in a good way), and everyone seems to dig it."

-Cheesy funk. Good name for a band.

So would you make your funk the Meters funk or would you make it something else? Let me know below.

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