Afrika Bambaataa

Beware (The Funk Is Everywhere)

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A semi-remarkable album from Afrika Bambaataa, following up on the success of Planet Rock. This one has less full-fledged anthems, but what's here isn't bad at all. "Bambaataa's Theme" uses his trademark mix of electronic backings and heavier beats. "Tension" slows down and softens with female vocal leads. "Rock America" and the cover of MC5's "Kick out the Jams" are closer stylistically to Planet Rock, with added guitar riffs throughout. On side B, he moves into more straightforward old school rap and beat-laden grooves immersed completely in the funk tradition, including "Bionic Kats," a knockoff of "Atomic Dog." For Bambaataa fans, this album is certainly a worthwhile addition. For those wishing for a basic introduction or a more comprehensive look at the ridiculously wide breadth of Bambaataa's music, the Planet Rock album or Tommy Boy's greatest-hits compilation (Looking for the Perfect Beat) would probably be in order.

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