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Published: 2016/12/16
by Larson Sutton

The Meters
A Message from The Meters: The Complete Josie, Reprise & Warner Bros. Singles 1968-1977

Rhythm junkies, guitar heads, groove seekers, funk enthusiasts, NOLA-philes unite! This is what you have all been hoping for; all the singles from The Meters’ peak years of 1968-1977. Compiled on two discs, these 40 songs reach into every corner of the iconic and vastly influential New Orleans quintet’s catalog, with the hits (“Cissy Strut,” “Hey Pocky A-Way”) and the history. The immense talent of the five- Ziggy Modeliste, George Porter, Jr., Leo Neocentelli, Cyril Neville, and Art Neville- was even greater than the sum of its parts, able to hybridize their various styles into a breakthrough sound that was something irresistibly magnetic and unique. This is the required textbook of groove; a masterclass of an ensemble giving each of its contributors their own pocket of space that seamlessly lock together like cogs, turning and churning out example after defining example of pioneering funk and group dynamic perfection. Disc one is weighted more with the early years’ instrumentals as affecting today as in the late ‘60s, while the second displays the group’s forays into more popular song structure with catchy, party-anthem choruses and lyrics that range from novel (“Chug-Chug-Chug-A-Lug (Push ‘N’ Shove)) to artifacts of the time (“Disco is the Thing Today”). Most collections like these are restricted to a group’s repertoire controlled by a particular label. The beauty of this set is that it collects The Meters singles from three separate labels- Josie, Reprise, and Warner Bros.- in one swoop, making it as comprehensive as it is essential in exploring the timeline of this treasured band.

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