Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Great and Underrated
From time to time, while rifling through my ever-expanding CD collection, I stumble upon an album from a decade or more ago that you just never hear about anymore but that is, in fact, pretty great.
This is definitely the case with En Vogue's Funky Divas album. (If you follow this link, you will see that All Music Guide completely agrees with me, which further deepens my love of the All Music Guide.)
Long before Destiny's Child launched Beyonce into the limelight, En Vogue pioneered the way as a modern girl group with amazing vocal talent; long before the Black-Eyed Peas mixed Motown melody with hip-hop beats, En Vogue created the form in the exemplary Funky Divas.
Songs that are now almost 15 years old still sound fresh and at the same time, classic. Listen again in particular to "My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It)", "Giving Him Something He Can Feel" and their amazing version of Curtis Mayfield's "Hooked on Your Love" before revelling in the sonic perfection that is "Give It Up, Turn It Loose."
Forgiving the irritating skit-like opening to that song, there is nothing more cathartic, musically and lyrically, than the lines "Give it up, turn it loose/ If they don't want you, you don't need 'em."