JC Davis, A New Day! The Complete Mus-I-Col Recordings of JC Davis

J. Edward Keyes

By J. Edward Keyes

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
A former Famous Flame starts his own fire.

A JC Davis single can be spotted on the inside cover of DJ Shadow's legendary …Endtroducing LP, and for years that was about as close as anyone could get to one. The onetime bandleader for James Brown's Famous Flames issued just a few solo singles after he split with the Godfather in the mid '60s, but they soon became prized amongst funk aficionados. It's easy to get cynical about the cult of the obscure, but in this case the specialists are on to something. Skip the colorless title track and head straight for the breathless, high-speed chase of "Circleville," where drag racing trumpets nip at the heels of loop-de-looping guitars. For all its velocity, though, Complete never achieves — or even attempts — the incendiary power of Brown's best work. Davis instead works steady simmering grooves that inspire movement, if not revolution.