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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Science Faxtion

Living on Another Frequency

Review by Gary Hill

This is really an unusual album. One can certainly look at it as a “supergroup” release. We get Bootsy Collins (the man the legend) teaming up with Buckethead, Greg Hampton, Chuck D, Catfish and Bernie Worrell. With that kind of a combination of talent (there are many more names spread around throughout the disc) you must wonder what type of music this is. Well, it seems to merge hard edged modern metallic sounds with the classic R & B of Parliament, hip hop, funk and even some prog into a mix that’s unique and entertaining. It’s one of the more unusual releases to come around in a while.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Sci-Fax Theme
Starting with a spoken introduction this is a swirling, moving instrumental (OK, there are some vocals but all spoken and loops serving as sound bites) that’s quite cool. At times this resembles hip hop at other points progressive rock. All in all it’s a bit weird, but also very intriguing.

Lookin' For Eden
This is a hard edged rocker with equal parts Kiss and Living Colour. There’s a definite metal edge to this killer powerhouse. You might hear some Hendrix on this, too. I could swear the one chorus on this is “Go, Gadget, Go.”

At Any Cost
Pounding and heavy, this is a very metallic track. Still it has all kinds of hip hop sound allusions. It’s a cool number that’s a lot of fun. There are touches of progressive rock on this, but also bits that call to mind Powerman 5000.
Chaos In Motion
Even heavier than the one that preceded it, this has a lot of that ultra heavy modern metal sound. If I had to categorize this I don’t think I’d hesitate to call it “metal.” Still there are some catchy hooks and other elements that pull it beyond that title.
Famous
With weird sound effects, loops and other elements, this is a slow groove that’s about as far from metal as you can imagine. There are bits that make me think “prog rock,” but the overall feel is a modern Parliament meets Prince.F
L.O.A.F.
This is the title track to the disc. It’s got more of that metal Powerman 5000 feeling to it. It’s heavy and quite metallic. It’s also very catchy.

Gone Tomorrow
Here we get a mellower groove. A lot of this has that sort of smooth R & B sound, but it’s also got plenty of rock in the mix. There’s a prog like keyboard solo on this and overall this is one of the most accessible numbers here. There’s some weirdness before they end this.
Life-IS-IN-DeLiver
Punk meets funk and metal in this killer jam. I like this one a lot and in many ways it’s more along the lines of Parliament than a lot of the other music here. It’s also one of my favorite songs on show here.

Take You Down
Fairly brutal, this is a noisy metal jam through must of the piece. There are segments that bring it back from the brink of uber heavy, though. It’s a cool tune that at times leans towards space metal.
What It Is
This is a rap, but there is a major chunk of rock built in. That’s in the form of the stomping chorus. This is one of the coolest pieces on show here.
Fatally Flawed Flesh
This is another super heavy metal tune. It’s good, but perhaps a bit less diverse than some of the other stuff – and in my opinion less successful because of that factor.
I See Rockets
Based on “The Star Spangled Banner” as its starting point, this is another that’s  a fine example of how hard edged rock can merge with sounds more akin to classic funk and R & B. There’s a lot of Hendrix in the midst of this one. It’s also one of the strongest cuts on show here.
ZIONPLANET 10
 They saved the best for last. This track is perhaps the most “different” number here. It’s got elements of R & B, but is primarily a proggy balladic number. There are space rock sounds here and other things. Whatever you call it, though, this is my favorite track on the disc.

 
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