The Gap Band

Round Trip

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Long after its popularity had declined, the Gap Band was having an impact on the Afro-American music scene. The end of the 1980s found the funksters being sampled frequently by hip-hoppers, and it was hard to miss their tremendous influence on the extremely popular new jack swing outfit Guy. The Gap Band itself, however, had started to go downhill both commercially and creatively in the mid-'80s. When the Wilson brothers signed with Capitol in 1989, optimists were hoping to see them return to the top, but sadly, much of the old magic was gone. Round Trip isn't terrible, and tunes ranging from the seductive "We Can Make It Alright" to the hard funk of "It's Our Duty" and the single "Addicted to Your Love" are fairly decent. But play this high-tech recording alongside 1979's Gap Band 2 or 1980's Gap Band 3, and it becomes obvious that the Gapsters were long past their prime. While those classics burned and exploded, Round Trip merely simmers.

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