Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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George Clinton & the P-Funk All Stars

  • T.A.P.O.A.F.O.M. [550 Music, 1996] ***
  • Live and Kickin' [Intersound, 1997] ***
  • Dope Dogs [Dogone, 1998] A
  • How Late Do U Have 2BB4UR Absent? [The C Kunspyruhzy, 2005] B+

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

T.A.P.O.A.F.O.M. [550 Music, 1996]
authenticated gangsta grooves for the sample factory ("If Anybody Gets Funked Up [It's Gonna Be You]," "Funky Kind [Gonna Knock It Down]") ***

Live and Kickin' [Intersound, 1997]
more funky than fresh, their best live one withal ("Flashlight," "Cosmic Slop") ***

Dope Dogs [Dogone, 1998]
The Goduncle hasn't made a bad record since the band broke up or an exciting one since Computer Games. Until now. Don't try this at home, kids, but the secret is that instead of adapting to youthcult fashion, a trick he manages like no other fiftysomething can, he indulges an idée fixe. For years he's been fascinated by the involvement of Old Mac Uncle's C.I.A. ("I-O") in contraband--meaning weapons, ultimately, but more enjoyable threats to human life first. So he starts by assuming dogs sniff dope because they gotta have it and takes off. Just about every song has both dogs and dope in it, with variations as comical as Mr. Wiggles the Worm and considerably darker. The funk is long on guitar and capable of anything. Is that bebop? You know, behind the elementary-school rappers and the pill-popping poodle? A

How Late Do U Have 2BB4UR Absent? [The C Kunspyruhzy, 2005]
Two and a half hours that confound my capacity for quantification. Some of the funk is standard-issue ass-bounce, many of the femme cameos are piss breaks, the slow ones run down; there's too much throwaway, experiment, and crap. But four long tracks are as remarkable as any Clinton of the past two decades: the so-funky-you-can-smell-it "Something Stank," the Jerry Lee/Danny & the Juniors medley "Whole Lotta Shakin'," "I Can Dance" and its stripper shit-talk, "Viagra"'s too-fucking-hard speed-metal. Add the Prince cameo "Paradigm" (rhymes with "spare a dime") and the is-that-a-girl? closer "Booty" for a great album lasting 48 minutes. Then do the rest of the math. B+