Various Artists

Resurrection: The Amplified Bible of Heavenly Grooves

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Old-fashioned Christian dogma and ass-shaking funk have never exactly gone hand in hand, but every now and again, almighty God and the almighty groove have divined a common ground -- at least, that's the message of Resurrection: The Amplified Bible of Heavenly Grooves, a fantastic collection of rare funk, soul, and jazz cuts assembled from Christian records of the 1960s and 1970s. According to the liner notes, compilers Martin Green and Jonny Trunk spent years scouring thrift shops and bargain bins in search of their personal Holy Grail: hard-edged, street-savvy toe-tappers that preached faith and funk in equal measure. And while there are a few familiar names here, like Tubby Hayes ("Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken" and "He Who Would Valiant Be,"), a pair of collaborations with Ted Taylor, and the Crusaders ("The Little Drummer Boy"), most of this stuff is as obscure as the liners would suggest. There's an obvious risk to high-concept compilations like this one, but whether your personal savior answers to the initials "J.C." or "J.B.," there's more than enough here to lift your spirits high. Highlights include Johnny Pearson's "Cantante Domino," Ralph Carmichael's "The Addict's Psalm," and John Ylvisaker's "A Gay Cliché."