The Budos Band Budos Band II

Staten Island’s finest, the Budos Band, continue looking east, beyond Queens, beyond the Hamptons, all the way to I-thiopia. The Eastern sound, to borrow a term from Augustus Pablo, has fully absorbed Afrobeat on this new effort. The record starts with a sassy cover of Bollywood gem "Na Na Na Yeh Kya Karne Lage Ho” (recently reissued on the Bombay Connection compilation), here entitled "Chicago Falcon.” Track two, "Budos Rising,” sounds like the Zombies on tour in East Africa. The breakdowns and rhythm arrangements are still Africa-meets-America but the frigid organ sound makes this tune special — if there was such a thing as bone-chilling funk, this would be it. Possibly my favourite track from this disc is "His Girl,” which transforms one of the sunniest Motown confections of all time into a tense groove that conjures up an imaginary back-story with its subtle change of title. Almost all the original hooks to "My Girl” remain but are barely recognisable on first listen. This is an exciting disc. Don’t let the retro sound fool you into thinking that this is retro music. (Daptone)