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Soul Exorcism Redux

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Album Review

Recorded in June of 1980, Soul Exorcism proves that jazz, funk, experimental, and new wave make quite an intoxicating mix when perfected. James Chance sums up the proceedings perfectly in the liner notes, where he states that the music perfectly reveals the essence and soul of New York City (even though it was recorded in Rotterdam). Backed up by a stellar backing band, which Chance himself calls one of the most volatile units he's worked with, the Contortions simply shine. Like most other Contortions recordings, cacophony rears its head from time to time, but that's what the band uses to paint different moods and textures: it's not used haphazardly. The whole album is inspired from beginning to end, and features such great tracks as "I Danced with a Zombie," "Exorcise the Funk," and a pair of interesting covers — Michael Jackson's "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" and James Brown's "King Heroin." [In 2007 the Roir label reissued the album as Soul Exorcism Redux. Three tracks from a 1987 demo session were added to the end of the track list along with new art work.]

Customer Reviews

Take a Chance

25 years plus have passed since the recording of this show and it still sounds fresh, exciting and a bit challenging too (that a good thing). The melding of punk and funk seem to make perfect sense when left in the hands of James and the Contortions. We’re fortunate that there were a few bands around not afraid to break the rules and inspire a sea of others. Also, we’re lucky that there was someone around that night to have enough sense to capture this moment on tape.


A masterpiece fusion of free funk style and punk rock attitude. Sheer brilliance.

Soul Exorcism Redux, James Chance & the Contortions
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