After storming the R&B charts in 1980 with the singles-spawning Hot Box, Fatback quickly capitalized on this success with another album's worth of their funky disco stylings that same year. 14 Karat lacks the obvious singles of the album that preceded it, but it is stronger overall as an album. It starts strongly with the one-two punch of "Let's Do It Again" and "Angel," the former being an invitation to partying driven by a massive, thumping bassline and the latter being a ballad sweetened with plenty of synthesizer and mellow harmony vocals. 14 Karat's other tracks present a combination of strengths and weaknesses, with both sometimes fighting it out on the same track. For instance, "Concrete Jungle" has some unimaginative "life in the big city" lyrics but makes up for it with a unique, percussion-driven melody and "Lady Groove" fails to present a colorful character portrait that lives up to its intriguing title but makes up for it with an arresting, synthesizer-dominated melody. The one truly weak track is "Without Your Love," a pleasant but unimaginative ballad that feels like filler. However, that song is easily made up for by the killer synthesizer-based hooks of "Your Love Is Strange" and the sharp, jazzy instrumental stylings of "Chillin' Out." In short, 14 Karat is an album that will primarily appeal to Fatback's fans but is strong enough to provide plenty of diversion for those listeners. ~ Donald A. Guarisco
22555MThe Fatback Band - 14 Karat (CD)http://oldies.scdn5.secure.raxcdn.com/i/boxart/large/37/029667376020.jpg?v=313.9912.43USDInStock/Genre/Funk/Music Categories/RB-FunkWestbound UkCDFunkThe-Fatback-Band2007-05-08
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