Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

MojoRising gets funky with their disco, leaves the critic behind

February 16, 2010

For some reason, funk has never connected with me. My overpowering whiteness may have doomed funk from ever moving my body. But whether its that or some other reason, I just don’t get funky when the funk gets down. I stand about awkwardly. Thus, MojoRising‘s EP Feel What You Feel makes me more uncomfortable than dance-floor-ready.

Equal parts disco, funk, and rock, MojoRising is concerned with making the party happen. They do slow it down a bit for the closer, but the other four tracks here are about sex (in varying degrees) and written for the sake of making people dance. Take a moment to remember that this band’s name is MojoRising, and you’ll see what I mean. They want you to shake it.

If you’re a fan of funky dance-floor jams, then MojoRising will be right up your alley. There’s way too much organ going on for me in these songs; my favorite track is the organ-less opener “She Woke Up to Me,” which could have busted straight out of 1975, as far as disco is concerned. The rest of the tracks rely heavily on the organ/bass interactions, which are neat, but not my cup of tea.

MojoRising has skills. The vocalist is solid, the songwriting is tight, and the grooves are thick. If I liked funk, I’m pretty sure I would like this. But it’s just not funky enough to break down my anti-funk shield of sorts. The best funk should be able to disarm any shield, so that’s a sign of some sort. But if you’re down with funkiness, MojoRising should be on your list to check out.

Stephen Carradini and Lisa Whealy write reviews of instrumental, folk, and singer/songwriter music. We write about those trying to make the next step in their careers and established artists.

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