Review

1619 Bad Ass Band

1619 Bad Ass Band

P-Vine • 2022

Crediting bands for their names would definitely be a great move. Ultimately a band’s name is part of its creative performance. And after all, advertising agencies even make money with the same type of thing. »1619 Bad Ass Band« may be less catchy than »Parliament,« »Funkadelic,« or »Kool and the Gang,« mainly because it’s not immediately obvious what the number in the name is referring to. (It could be referring to the year 1619, when the first African slaves reached North America by ship.) But it certainly is punchy. Like the first track on their only album from 1976. »Love to Love« gets straight to the point, throwing in a powerful bass and drums, aimed directly at your thorax. The lyrics are no less inferior, but sometimes belted out a little faster than one would want for easy understanding. In the intervening (slightly slower) spoken dialogue between a woman and man, however, the latter is by no means as successful in his wooing as the groove promises. »Step Out« is more belted out funk, because this is what this brand of R&B is all about. The second half of the LP noticeably loses momentum, the testosterone levels simply can’t be pushed to the extreme indefinitely. Which, unfortunately, is also the less interesting part of the material. Keeping a funk engine running for four minutes was something the 1619 Bad Ass Band did quite well, but writing memorable songs wasn’t their forte.