Various Artists

True Funk

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True Funk spreads 51 cuts over three discs, all beautifully remastered and sold at a wonderfully attractive price point. There are no real liner notes to speak of other than complete track info, but it hardly matters. This isn't a set for critical listening so much as it's a comp designed for maximum aural pleasure. The roster of artist and the tune selection are impeccable anyway. Disc one includes the hard funk of acts like James Brown and Bobby Byrd, but also smooth groove tunes such as Leon Haywood's "I Want to Do Something Freaky to You," and the Eddie Kendricks backbone slippin groove "Keep on Truckin'." In addition there are cuts from the Commodores, the Gap Band and Parliament. Disc two features stone classics such as Cameo's "Word Up!," Lipps, Inc.'s "Funky Town," Rick James' "Super Freak," as well as a boatload of other smashes. Finally, cuts such as "Mama Feelgood" by Lyn Collins, Con Funk Shun's "Chase Me," Roy Ayers' "Don't Stop the Feeling," the Bar-Kays' "Too Hot to Stop, Pt. 1," and so many more round out disc three. The chronological range here runs from the beginning of the classic funk era in 1972 through 1979, when it was displaced on the charts by mainstream disco. There are no rarities here at all, but there are several 12" mixes as well as the single versions of the hits. One could do far worse than putting all this power on the box and letting it rip.

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