Yet another anniversary – 21 years of Acid Jazz – is marked by this debut album from Twisted Tongue, aka production duo Dave Jay and Mark Dalton.
Their approach is established by opener “You Want That Soul?”, a slice of liquid funk blending the languid propulsion of Sly Stone, the inventiveness of Prince, chipmunk vocals, and a cheeky attitude to the deracinated state of modern dancepop: “If I may be so bold, I think y’all should say no – kick Gwen and Britney’s asses clean out the ghetto”.
They practice what they preach, too: there’s an element of swing to the groove setting it apart from clicktrack dancefloor fodder. They like to mix their influences, too “(I Need A) Freak For Armageddon” is James Chance-style punk-funk-jazz, with trumpet soloing, while the stomp groove of “Got A Really Good Thing” features a blend of distinctive voices in Family Stone vein, from lascivious bass croon to squealing soul falsetto. But both their “Feelin’ Junie Medley” and the psychedelic soul-jazz waltz “Mindbeam Parts 1 + 2” reveal Twisted Tongue’s biggest heroes to be George Clinton’s P-Funk crew, particularly when they start babbling about “funkenesis” mind-control. If you can’t wait for another OutKast or Gnarls Barkley album to drop, Twisted Tongue may fill that gap just fine.
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