26/03/2019: “Fencewalk” by Mandrill

A mandrill is a particularly scary type of monkey. I have no idea why a band would name themselves after one, except that it does sound quite fierce and cool.

The band Mandrill are a funk and soul outfit from Brooklyn, with a lot of Latin members. So although they play a wide range of musical styles, they can be fairly called Latin funk.

“Fencewalk” is probably their most famous song, and compromises 5 minutes of intense musicality. The start and end of the song are more standardly funky, whereas the middle section builds into a busy crescendo, crowned with a wailing guitar solo.

The main melody throughout the majority of the song is provided by a strong brass section.

The rhythm section is notably tribal and syncopated even by the standards of 70s Latin funk.

The song was released on the 1973 album Composite Truth, which reached number 8 on the Billboard Top Soul Albums chart.

Truly extraordinary.

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