George Freeman

New Improved Funk

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New Improved Funk Review

by Jason Ankeny

The title says it all in three words, but New Improved Funk demands further elucidation. It's a fun house ride that veers sharply from funk to jazz to soul and back again, its scattershot approach nevertheless proves the best showcase George Freeman's guitar ever had. Recorded with two separate backing groups, New Improved Funk sprawls all over the stylistic map, and virtually the only common denominator from track to track is Freeman's guitar. He further confounds expectations with skronky solos and blissfully psychedelic interludes that go nowhere, but then the journey is more important than the destination here anyway. Somehow this mess still comes together, galvanized by Von Freeman's fiery tenor sax and its undeniably impressive gutbucket grooves. Everything that it's advertised to be.

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