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Music with a message: Soul Clap issue a funk-flecked rallying cry on their expansive new album

'WTF (World Transformation Force)' combines irresistible grooves with thought-provoking themes

  • Patrizio Cavaliere
  • 30 April 2021
Music with a message: Soul Clap issue a funk-flecked rallying cry on their expansive new album

Interplanetary sonic disciples Soul Clap unleashed their latest album last week, and – quite apart from serving an exquisitely refined selection of genre-blending grooves – the Boston-based duo's new collection demonstrates an unfiltered desire to spark a vital shift in the way we humans interact with ourselves and our beleaguered planet.

Throughout their career, the pair have made a habit of traversing styles and genres in a boundless quest to create harmony through music. On top of this, they routinely demonstrate a sincere desire to engage, collaborate, and inspire the positive change that planet earth and humanity's collective core are so clearly crying out for. An essence of community spirit and inclusiveness has helped define the Soul Clap brand – with their Crew Love artist collaborations, DJs For Climate Action, and Rave The Vote initiatives testament to the diligence with which they pursue their artistic mission. “[The album is] a wake-up call to action, a time for all of us to join together on the path to positive change,” said Soul Clap via press release. “Dance music was born as a subversive, underground movement of marginalized people and we believe it’s our duty to follow in their footsteps and use the power of our culture for positive change.”

“WTF” is something many of us will have loudly exclaimed at various intervals over the course of the year gone by, and here Soul Clap borrow and adapt the initialism for the album's inspirational title. 'WTF (World Transformation Force)' is an attempt to address some of the profound questions and challenges society is currently facing through the irrepressible power of music: looking back into the roots of underground dance music with a futurist mindset – in the process channelling the effervescent talents of an eminent set of the movement's key artists. Nona Hendryx, Harry Dennis, Rich Medina, and Lori Lava are among the revered creators enlisted, and each adorns the album with a wholesome measure of their collective dance pedigree.

Unsurprisingly, the album isn't short of highlights, meandering through styles and textures without losing its soul-infused bearings. The album journeys into the vintage house shuffle and searingly soulful vocals 'Back 2 Love', before we take a detour into feel-good two-step hustle on the UKG flavours of 'You Can Shine Too'. Nona Hendryx interjects with her absorbing spoken word interlude on 'What If There Was No America', while Rich Medina shares the thought-provoking mood on 'Time For Dialogue'. 'Breathe' dives deep into spiritual house territory with its organic textures and intricate synth work, while Harry Dennis' determined vocal adds tension to the dirty funk layers and rolling bass of 'Sometimes We Cry'.

'Gardening' is arguably one of the standouts of the collection, with its stripped aesthetics and delicately deviant essence providing a dynamic bed from where the achingly soulful vocals and rap skits soar supremely, and funk lord George Clinton's grandson Tra'zae vividly demonstrates that the family juice runs strong as he laces the space-age ghetto funk of 'T.O.U.G.H'. Elsewhere, 'Manners, Mood & Attitude' sees rousing horns blend with soothing pads over infectious Latin rhythms, and 'Love Yourself' overflows with future soul honey. The slamming deep house grind of 'Peace Love Unity Respect' bursts into life, before the energy level shifts as we make way for Soul Clap's heartfelt and deeply personal wake up call on title track 'WTF (World Transformation Force)'.

Released to coincide with Earth Day on April 22, this is music with an irresistible message – and a rallying cry that humanity can ill-afford to ignore.

Soul Clap 'WTF (World Transformation Force)' is out now on Fool's Gold Records. You can buy it here

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