Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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  • Zapp [Warner Bros., 1980] C+
  • Zapp II [Warner Bros., 1982] B+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Zapp [Warner Bros., 1980]
"More Bounce to the Ounce," exactly. Like Bootsy's other funk alternative, Roger Troutman is a bit light--even when he grooves rather than croons he bounces rather than whomps. What makes him a smash with the black audience where the Sweat Band is barely a swoosh is his drolly mechanical detachment--especially when he turns on the vocoder, he could be Gary Numan with ants in his pants, or Kraftwerk on the one. C+

Zapp II [Warner Bros., 1982]
This idly functional, playfully mechanical six-cut dance LP tested my tolerance for innocent mindlessness, especially after I realized that my favorite tune appears on both sides. But unlike its predecessor it is a real dance LP--side one will function your ass off. And you'll want to play "Playin' Kinda Ruff" again. B+