Complete Recordings 1976-81

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During their dozen-year time span, ranging from 1970's Funkadelic to 1981's The Electric Spanking of War Babies, Funkadelic moved from deranged acid rock to unhinged funk and disco while never losing sight of their prime motivation: a blend of artistic looniness and technical brilliance that made them one of the decade's most interesting acts. The Castle box set Complete Recordings 1976-81 includes the four albums -- also available separately -- 1976's Hardcore Jollies, 1977's One Nation Under a Groove, 1979's Uncle Jam Wants You, and 1981's The Electric Spanking of War Babies, the final album by the George Clinton wing of Funkadelic. (Tales of Kidd Funkadelic, from 1976, was a leftovers collection of an earlier version of Funkadelic.) Though the late-'70s Funkadelic leaned very close to Parliament's disco-booty affair (to the detriment of their earlier guitar-based psychedelia), these four records are packed with Clinton hits -- "Hardcore Jollies," "One Nation Under a Groove," "Who Says a Funk Band Can't Play Rock?!," and "(Not Just) Knee Deep." With little extra compared to the available CDs, however, the only characteristic that separates this box set is the fine essay by Geoff Brown.

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