Listening to Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band made me realize that the only funk I can really get behind is the old-school brand pioneered by artists like James Brown. Call me a purist, but I dig the fact that Brown and his cohorts kept it relatively minimal, refraining from long-winded solos or jammy freakouts.
Unfortunately, that's not the case with Greatest Hips Volume II. A majority of these funk and funk rock tunes include lots of accompanied solos that flirt with jam vibes. To be fair, this is an album of live cuts, so a bit of noodling is expected. But I can't say it makes for much of a compelling listen; the solos—along with the somewhat monotonous nature of these songs—bored me halfway through the first spin.
That's not to say this Asheville, N.C,. six-piece lacks chops. They are tight musicians and they definitely mix it up by throwing in a few surprises—the affected vocals on "Bottle Rocket" come to mind. Still, I'd be inclined to keep this disc in rotation if they adopted more of a bare-bones approach to their sound.
Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band plays the Palace Thursday, March 18, at 9 PM. $10.