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Free Your Mind...

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Editors’ Notes

This monumental aural stew of Detroit-recorded psych, funk, soul, and topical inner-city invectives add up to what could be described as emotional musical liberation. That was the intention anyway; bandleader/provocateur George Clinton claims this 1970 record was recorded in a day to see if they could “cut a whole album while we were tripping on acid.” While that’s a dubious assertion, Funkadelic’s second album is indeed twisted with wild innovation, mainly thanks to Eddie Hazel’s freaky guitar spazzes, Bernie Worrell’s classically trained (yet wacked) keyboards, and a sort of Pentecostal delivery of lyrics, which are spoken, sung, and screeched. The album opens on a filthy groovefest of feedback and funk that repeats the album title until it’s tattooed on your brain. The dancefloor blaster “Funky Dollar Bill” likens greed to junkie-like addiction, and “Friday Night, August 14th” conjures a beautifully bloody intersection of Sly & The Family Stone and The MC5. The fitting closer, “Eulogy and Light,” is essentially an acid-tinged Lord’s Prayer that doubles as a timeless monologue on urban life.

Customer Reviews

Epic Acid Rock

Don't worry brothers, this ain't no disco funk; man, this is pure freakout. The story goes the Funkadelic Superstars got together in a studio to see if they could come up with an entire album in one day while dropping acid, and it's Eddie Hazel's powerful guitar that really shows its light on this one. Chock full of sound effects, strange phasing, and weird noises a la Zappa that could never be reproduced with the best digital gear, I guarentee this album will put a smile on your face and make you want to party! "Free Your Mind..." and "Friday Night" are my favorite tracks, and I also absolutely love the freakout sound collage of "Eulogy and Light." Get this album, son, get it!

A Must for George Clinton Fans, But Hard to Understand Otherwise

This 2005 release is a bit longer than the original 1970 version, replete with three different cuts of "I Wanna Know If It's Good To You...," making it definitely worth the purchace price if you love George Clinton. "Fish, Chips, and Sweat..." was also not on the original album, and in this version, you get the all-important digital booklet, too. The three most valuable and memorable tracks on this album from a conoisseur's point of view are the title track, with its soaring and minimalist, harmonic guitar groove and Hazel's incendiary soloing; "Friday Night, August 14th," with its highly infectious melody; and "Funky Dollar Bill," which is a great piece of social criticism. Other than that, "Some More" is a surprisingly pedestrian blues riff (albeit with distorted vocals), but the original "Free Your Mind..." radio advertisement is also provided, and is timelessly far cooler than any radio advertisements of today. This album seems to embody the dirtiest of dirty funk, and the low-tech effects are almost grungy, blatantly reflecting the birth of heavy metal, the new musical genre being created when this album was written. George Clinton was a true visionary, even if some or all of those visions were inspired by LSD (and this album certainly reeks of it), as it seems to be most coherent when played at 4 or 5 a.m.

Free Your Mind....

I really do love socially conscious music. OUT there, and ridiculously perfect.


Formed: 1968

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '10s

Though they often took a back seat to their sister group Parliament, Funkadelic furthered the notions of black rock begun by Jimi Hendrix and Sly Stone, blending elements of '60s psychedelia and blues plus the deep groove of soul and funk. The band pursued album statements of social/political commentary while Parliament stayed in the funk singles format, but Funkadelic nevertheless paralleled the more commercial...
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