This Funk Band was one of the greatest bands of Funk in the history. This album is called There’s a Riot Goin’ On in response to Marvin Gaye‘s album What’s Goin’ on?. The year was 1971, out in the market were Led Zeppelin IV, Who’s Next, What’s goin’ on, Hunky Dory from David Bowie, L.A. Woman from The Doors and Imagine from John Lennon. There was a lot of competition for the family stone but besides that, the album reached the number 1 in the Billboard Soul Albums.
At that time, Sly and The Family were facing different kind of Troubles: missed deadlines for new music, relationship among the members were deteriorating and cocaine consumption. All this troubles combined led to the drummer Gregg Errico‘s to leave the band in the beginning of 1971. Besides that, Luv n Haight has the sixties’ soul sound in it! Just like a baby is a really sexy tune, groovy and with a lot of soul. Time presents a relaxed aura and can transport you into a mental travel to the sixties again, to a bar without lights, to a smooth place. Thank You for Talkin’ to Me Africa“, this song is recognized as one of the most influential funk song of all the time, it was the only track that the Family Stone and Sly recorded before their gap and their problems, and i can feel the difference in the bass here, because their original bassist was still in the band for this song. According to previous investigation: “The lyrics can be interpreted as a summation of both the career of Sly and the Family Stone to date, as well as a portrait of the era at the transition from the 1960s into the 1970s. The song features co-lead vocals from Sly Stone, Rose Stone, Freddie Stone, and Larry Graham. Bassist Larry Graham, prominently uses the then-new technique of slap bass on this recording.”
«What’s certain is that Riot is unlike any of Sly & the Family Stone’s other albums, stripped of the effervescence that flowed through even such politically aware records as Stand! This is idealism soured, as hope is slowly replaced by cynicism, joy by skepticism, enthusiasm by weariness, sex by pornography, thrills by narcotics. Joy isn’t entirely gone – it creeps through the cracks every once and awhile and, more disturbing, Sly revels in his stoned decadence. What makes Riot so remarkable is that it’s hard not to get drawn in with him, as you’re seduced by the narcotic grooves, seductive vocals slurs, leering electric pianos, and crawling guitars. As the themes surface, it’s hard not to nod in agreement, but it’s a junkie nod, induced by the comforting coma of the music. And damn if this music isn’t funk at its deepest and most impenetrable – this is dense music, nearly impenetrable, but not from its deep grooves, but its utter weariness». (From AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)
Download: There is a riot goin on