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“Let’s Party” by Kool and the Gang

Producing a single that feels as real, vulnerable, and as intimate as seeing the band live and in person is no easy feat, but I must say that after giving Kool & the Gang’s new slab of soul courtesy the Vegas-style “Let’s Party” a few spins, this iconic juggernaut knows how to make it look easy. When I was listening to this song for the first time, I couldn’t help but get completely lost in the verse and gentle bass dueling going on in the background, soon being transported to a dark hole in the wall club somewhere, and Kool & the Gang is up on stage before me, owning the crowd, owning the soul and the energy of the room with every burst of sound from their instruments.

This wasn’t an isolated incident; in every listening session I’ve afforded this piece, each is a unique, up close and personal glimpse of the band’s creative depth, emotional capacities, and shared passion for the craft that they’ve come to master so well, which is very hard to do after so many years together. 

A big part of the reason why Kool & the Gang is so adept at connecting with their audience on such a personal level is directly related to their overall compositional approach, which puts as much value in the textures rendered by the music itself as it does the lyrics that are used to convey the narrative of a particular song. The two are mutually exclusive and work together in perfect synchronicity to make “Let’s Party,” and everything this unit has shown us thus far in their career, not only a fun listen but a very stimulating one at that.

 Their method of attack recalls a lot of old school peers like Parliament, but at the same time, it is completely 21st century when you consider their excellent use of the studio itself as an independent instrument that can be used to set the mood of not just a single verse but the entirety of a song. 

I don’t know about anyone else, but to me, this kind of music goes so well with the carefree, let-your-hair-down sort of spirit that is synonymous with the spirit of OG funk. While Kool & the Gang is a good pick any time of year, there’s something about these big, funky grooves that make them as irresistible as a blazing beach bonfire that burns long into the night.

There are a couple of moments that could be expanded upon in concert, but overwhelmingly, this is a single that was designed to get us moving and keep us moving all year long, celebrating good vibes day and night. I can’t think of an argument against this being one of the most positive and relevant narratives for a group of artists to detail in their work, especially with all the chaos in the world right now. I highly recommend music lovers give this track a close look as this crew’s inspiring career continues to unfold before our ears. 

Mindy McCall



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