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Future Shock

4.2 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Herbie Hancock ~ Future Shock

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Rockit
  2. Future Shock
  3. TFS
  4. Earth Beat
  5. Autodrive
  6. Rough


Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B0000025VT
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #523,341 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Musically, I would give this CD 5 stars for 'Rockit'
the seminal track that fused DJ scratching with Herbie's
jazz tinged analog synthesizer experiments over a drum
machine. The amazing remix 'Rockit (Megamix)' is also
quite stunning with some very creative use of samples
(ahead of its time).
The problem is that whoever remastered the music follows
the modern trend of overcompressing the music, draining
all dynamic range out of it to increase the apparent loudness.
This makes the music jump out at you, but it's very
tiresome on the ears and drains the life out of it.
Personally, I can't even listen to the CD anymore.
I would recommend prospective buyers pick up one of the old
school hip hop compilations with Rockit on it instead
(the other tracks on the LP/CD haven't aged as well)
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Format: Audio CD
The legs of one of the robots in the fantastic video for Rockit says it all; grooving to the funky beat while moving in a tight circle, keeping in step with the turntable scratches and driving the beat where dub, hip-hop and jazz became a new dynamic in the studio. Everybody dance now!

Future Shock was a new sensation when released in early 1983, as Herbie Hancock (and his Rockit band) & Bill Laswell teamed up to deliver electronics with funk, fusion and a sprinkling of avant-garde.

Rockit garnered a Grammy award for best R&B instrumental performance, while the video captured five awards - including Video of the Year - in the first MTV Video Music Awards show.

The CD has five cuts sandwiched between Rockit and Rockit (Mega Mix), the latter not on the original release. A true gem is Future Shock, a Curtis Mayfield composition. Earth Beat and Rough pump the funk through the speakers, while Hancock lets the jazz notes do the talking in T.F.S. and Autodrive.

That the collaboration of Hancock and Laswell was unable to reproduce the magic in subsequent releases speaks greatly about the quality found in Future Shock.
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By A Customer on June 15, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I bought this album when it came out as an experiment and at first I really didn't know what to think. It was just completely alien to me being a teenage metalhead. Over the following weeks however, I became addicted to it, playing it regularly- something I've done ever since.
Rockit is fairly representative of the albums electro/hip hop content but other tracks such as Earthbeat and Rough go much deeper to incorporate ambient and even world music. The title track is like electro vs. a rather camp P-funk!
The main strength of this album for me is that has a completely unique atmosphere that it maintains throughout. It is rather like a strange alien landscape- it provides excellent escapism because of the inhuman feel created by the stiff rhythms and huge warm soundscapes. FUNK is the key word here, meaning that the album has only dated in an academic sense.
It is impossible to turn off. It is definately recommended for the car. In my opinion the Rockit megamix is the only track that has dated to the point of embarassment- the title gives it away! Every other track though remains classic electro. F-F-F-F-Fresh!
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Format: Audio CD
Herbie's alway's had his hand on the pulse of music, especially cutting edge stuff. He hooked up with Bill Laswell just when Laswell started an incredible run of "production jobs" that continues on through the 90's, and beyond. It's hard to figure just WHO get's the most credit here. Who cares? If you like it, dig! If you don't think it's "jazzy" enough, that's cool too, because it's very hip-hop/beats oriented (no guest "raps" but some cool soul vocals). A jazz artist incorporating the use of turntables and a whole array of synths and such-- read the liner notes with all the folks who appear here. One can't expect "Kind of Blue" now can you? Get funked up!
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Format: Audio CD
Between 1980 and 1982,Herbie Hancock found himself in an important transitional phase musically. In 1981 he released the album Magic Windows,a hardcore contemporary funk album whose final number-the instrumental "The Twilight" clone began the journey to what would enevitably occur on this album. Of course between that was an interesting musical side bar in Lite Me Up,a pop-funk album very much in the vein of a Qwest type release and featuring such Quincy Jones luminaries as Rod Temperton and the Brother's Johnson along with vocalist Gavin Christopher. This made perfect sense with Herbie's involvement with that group of musicians even earlier on. Few but Herbie could've guessed what his next musical move would be. During the earlier part of the decade,a new music was already beginning to emerge from the also gestating hip-hop genre. It was called scratch-very much an improvisational art that utilized turntables in a percussive manner. So Herbie rounded on the high diversified bassist Bill Laswell,leader of the avante garde funk band Material as well as Grandmixer DST on turntable for a shift in musical priorities that would be extremely relevatory. Not only for Herbie but for the music of the 80's in general.

"Rockit" is of course a scratch icon song of it's day-the song that altered Herbie Hancock's entire musical priorities while at the same time maintaining a bluesy jazz melody amid all the vocoder,synthesizers,drum machines and turntabling from DST.
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