Various Artists

Grazing in the Trash, Vol. 2: The Soul Fire Funk 45 Collection

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Soul Fire delivers another collection featuring both sides of some of their lo-fi and funky 7-inch singles from the recent past. And while the bands here don't breathe the same rarefied air the JB's, P-Funk, and the Meters do, their tasty-enough beats and arrangements should still keep the crate-digging elite happy. With the nascent funk of James Brown's late ‘60s material heavily in mind, both the Detroit Sex Machines and Lee Fields & the Explorers stretch out the blueprint with some natty guitar and horn work of their own. Working the Godfather's staple sound to similar effect, the Whitfield Brothers evoke the summery bongo psychedelics of early Funkadelic, while the Sugarman Three opt for a few shots of soul-jazz boogaloo. There's even some Afro-beat flavors, as Bama & the Family kick off the album with two flute-driven, Fela-inspired party jams – maybe not a document for the funk ages, but a late-nite groove treat for vinyl geeks all the same.

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