Updated: Feb 18
Welcome all to 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿, a series of weekly reviews by Charles Connolly - an artist in his own right. Here, Charles delves into the greatest brand new singles brought to you by the best unsigned artists on our electrifying and eclectic set of 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝘼𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙩 𝙎𝙥𝙤𝙩𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 playlists.
𝘼𝙣𝙤𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙧 𝙎𝙩𝙤𝙧𝙮 - 𝙎𝙤𝙣𝙖𝙢𝙤́
This week, Charles is your white-gloved ringmaster, and beckons you all to join him behind the curtain…
Having never been to the circus, I really do like to let my imagination run wild. The clowns, the tigers, the lions, the elephants, the gymnasts, the colours, the music and the freaks. I’m aware almost NONE of this goes on these days, so you’ll have to close your eyes and come with me, back to when things were a little different.
Now OPEN them! Roll up, Roll up! Yes, it’s magical and exciting, but stop gazing around and listen to me. I would like you to pay close attention to the freaks. Cue the funk - THAT’S RIGHT, ladies and gentlemen, we are in the world of the jazzers, the funksters, the hipsters and the like. Would you please welcome the rocking combo of the mightiest talent: SONAMÓ with their song, Another Story!!!
This wondrous band of talented freaks spear us at once with hella funky drumming, a bassist born wearing shades, a rhythmically chopping guitar and a screaming organ or two; and the funk has got YOU in its grasp. Think Parliament - not THAT parliament. Think Funkadelic circa 1974. Think Jamiroquai before they discovered synthesisers. Think Herbie Hancock’s hard-hitting Head Hunters album (say THAT when you’ve had a few)! This is heavy funk that kicks you where it hurts. The energy is high. The faces are grimacing as if in pain. The skin is shiny with well earnt hydration. They may be dressed in black and white like the Blues Brothers, but through the funk it turns to red and purple velveteen with a satin sheen! Only jazzers and funky people can pull off THOSE clothes. Who’s feeling horny? Well here comes the sax!
Sonamó - formed in San Francisco - have teased us just enough, only to reign things in and shuffle back a step or so into a Latin groove spiked with Trent Berry’s chorus guitar. Giuseppe Pinto - the frontman and organ player - holds centre stage, takes to the mic and whacks us with a powerful vocal performance, full of confidence and slickness. The whole band is completely in sync, as tight as the lid on an unopened jam jar. And jam they do! It is rare to hear a band so unified and together, but I have always felt that the greatest funk bands don’t feel so much like a band but more as one incredibly talented creature. I don’t know about you, but I’m thinking octopus…
Another Story is littered with syncopated stabs from the whole band, and all in unison. Mr. Cool (I have decided, but actually Bob Menacho) takes an unusual bass solo, with rhythmic harmonics, before really getting stuck in to his own considered vibe. Giuseppe switches from organ to piano for a glorious solo with its roots firmly in jazz, but just managing to keep within the boundaries of what the majority of us can understand. For those of you who thought it might be swaying towards jazz, the trumpet and saxophone barge their way to your attention to bring you back to the colourful circus of funk, with those stunning unified stabs! Chris Thalmann on drums, is truly one of the best I have heard in years. The band’s sound and production is seamless and utterly satisfying.
Sonamó translates literally as ‘Play now’, but colloquially means “show us what you got”. They certainly did THAT!!
Have a listen and join me after in the comments for one more round of funk.
I was going to tell you about the lions and tigers, but that’s another story.
Listen to 𝘼𝙣𝙤𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙧 𝙎𝙩𝙤𝙧𝙮 HERE!
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