Music Review: All Good Funk Alliance – Rhythm & FX (2012, Fort Knox Recordings)

Pervasive funky grooves and big beats to sport your dancing moves.

All Good Funk Alliance Rhythm and FX

Genre: Funk / Nu-Funk / Nu-Disco

Country: USA

Artists Website:  Reverbnation

Label:  Fort Knox Recordings

Few people can resists the rhythm of funk – it is earthly, pervasive and uplifting based on rhythmic afro consciousness. Funk is both a message and a form of music. Let us think of Funkadelic, who have been the embodiment of funk essence on all means. They have been on a mission to subvert every aspect of the establishment, the dominant culture, the system of oppression. From a musical point of view funk has spread across the world and merged with other musical styles: afro-beat with Fela Kuti in Nigeria, funky reggae with Toots and the Maytals in Jamaica, the historical brass bands of New Orleans like Rebirth Brass Band along along with other fusions (War, Mandrill etc.) and of course the classic funk bands like Kool & the Gang. The funk beat has been fused by many artists in electronic music as well, defining whole genres like downtempo, nu-funk etc.

All Good Funk Alliance (AGFA) would have set an ambitious goal for themselves if they would really want to unify all those strains and reincarnations of funk. But let’s simplify things: this EP is not an alliance of all funk to date, nevertheless it displays a good deal of notorious funky beats to forcefully drag you out of your computer screen to practice some dancing poses. That to say that I have a hard time writing this review.

The title track goes into the big beat territory, still retaining the funk breaks and (nu-) disco elements. The beat is actually very phat! I am not sure even if the sceptics could stand aside watching the others shaking on the dancefloor – frankly, this is hard to resist even if you are not a dance fanatic. The beat is hard enough for friends of bass music as well. At the 3:00 minute mark the beat is changing to give a different feel and create a contrast with the throwback bleeps that could satisfy even 8-bit electronic music freaks. Great track!

The second track ‘Move Yo Body’ is bouncing more in the classic funky beat and it is even more retro in an enjoyable and easy going way – but it is maybe the weakest of three in this EP. It also reminded me a bit of later Mr. Scruff (’Ninja Tuna’ era).The last original track, ‘So smooth’, is more interesting with really convincing beat, a smother tone and dubby ending. The remix of ‘Rhythm & FX’ by Funkanomic brings a more ‘organic’ sound, but also a more pronounced dubstep sounding break – and this where it really departs from the original, without changing its core character, which is strictly dancefloor.

AGFA are able to deliver what they are set to do, that is to bring the most infectious grooves in the dance and this EP is the proof. The production is hi-fi, top-notch with all forces in the frontlines – everything sounds groove solid. AGFA are not newbies, in a over a decade they have released manifold singles and EPs as well as a handful of albums like 2005’s ‘On The One’ or 2008’s ‘Slingshot Boogie’. AGFA is the duo of music producers Frank Cueto and Russell Belicek.

‘Rhythm & FX’ was just released last Tuesday and it will be out on Beatport and worldwide on the 23rd of March. This EP is paving the way for the upcoming album of AGFA ‘Jack of all Trades’ that will be out in May 2012. AGFA have joined forces with Thunderball and Fort Knox Five for a 2-week long tour through Montana, Colorado and Northern California. You can check the dates in the following poster.

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Find more funk related artists:

Rebirth Brass Band – Rebirth of New Orleans

AUditors DOmination – Palace of Light (2012, Timewarp music)

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