James White And The Blacks, Off White

Barry Walters

By Barry Walters

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
The herky, jerky saxman goes “disco.”

Recorded in the wake of Buy with most of the Contortions (the bass player is different) as well as guest musicians such as Bob Quine of Richard Hell & the Voidoids, this is Chance's "disco" incarnation, a side project that became his main focus when the Contortions broke up shortly after this and Buy were released. It's slightly looser, somewhat slower, more instrumental and only genuinely disco in the August Darnell-produced remake of "Contort Yourself" — and even then it's not exactly Donna Summer material. Elsewhere, Chance plays out his role of being a cerebral white guy contriving an extremely physical bastardization of black music. His girlfriend Anya Philips (who died of cancer two years later) and keyboardist Adele Bertei debate his success as a postmodern minstrel in "Almost Black Pt. 1" with hilarious results: "He don't have roots." "Yeah, well he's proud of it."