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Sex Machine Live

4.6 out of 5 stars 41 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Live, March 23, 1993
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Product Description

Famous live outing from 1970 with the JBs incl Bootsy Collins, Fred Wesley & Maceo Parker feat extended versions of funk classics like "Sex Machine" (nearly 11 minutes), "Brother Rapp," "Give It Up or Turnit a Loose," and "Mother Popcorn"

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After the legendary Live at the Apollo and the even better Love Power Peace: Live at the Olympia, James Brown could be forgiven if this 1970 live set disappoints. But this is Brother James, so skip the forgiveness. Sex Machine is the bomb, capturing a thrilling moment in Brown's funky revolution. The disc features 12 hot and sweaty, and sometimes slinky, live cuts recorded with the James Brown Band in 1969, plus three more studio jams (including a 10-minute title track) with his next band, the great JB's. "Can I get into it?" James shouts at the top. Oh man--does he even have to ask? --David Cantwell
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 23, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Live
  • Label: Polydor
  • ASIN: B000001E0S
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,734 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
For those tired of today's mainstream music scene, which seems to combine the worst of both worlds with its mix of the pointlessly offensive and the blandly sanitized, James Brown's Sex Machine is a rousing shot of pure energy, a reminder that music can have the ability to move its listeners in more ways than one. Sex Machine is a supreme distillation of decades worth of black music, compressing rock, soul, and R&B into a lean, frighteningly efficient sound that's had hips shaking since its release. Regardless of your age, race, or any other irrelevant superficial characteristic, this hour-plus-long live recording's raw, sweaty power effortlessly comes accross in every dizzyingly nimble horn inflection, every razor-sharp guitar line, and every intricate polyrhythm. And of course, towering over it all is the singular presence of James himself, exhibiting his unmistakable charisma as he shouts, howls, and wails his upbeat, liberating lyrics.

This album's finest moments are to be found in its tightly-played, compulsively danceable funk numbers, most notably the opening Get Up I Feel Like Being a Sex Machine, Brother Rapp (Part I & Part II), I Got the Feelin', and the high-octane closer Mother Popcorn. Driven by propulsive grooves and frenetic arrangements, these tracks and others like them all prove extremely effective when it comes to loosening inhibitions and provoking unconscious spasms of head-bobbing and foot-tapping. However, that's not to discount the record's emotional, horn-fueled balladry, led by the supremely soulful and musically complex Bewildered and If I Ruled the World. This set also throws in the instrumental double-shot of Lowdown Popcorn, which allows you to hear the band's instrumental chops if they weren't apparent already. All in all, Sex Machine is an essential document of the career of one of popular music's most important performers, and a must-buy for non-lame-o's everywhere.
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Format: Audio CD
I can truly say that for me James Brown is the one artist of the past half-century who is pretty much above criticism of any kind--criticism being irrelevant, a mere indulgence, when it comes to talking about this great rhythmic innovator, meglomaniac, and, not least, awesome singer and jet-propelled dancer. In the case of "Sex Machine," which was originally released in 1970, we have the usual slightly imperfect and somewhat deceptively presented James Brown album in that "Sex Machine" was originally sold as having been recorded live in Augusta. Actually, about half of it was, in 1969, with Brown's '60s band. The other half was cut with Bootsy and Catfish Collins in 1970, after the breakup of the old band, and festooned with fake applause to make the performances sound live. No matter, it's great stuff, the absolute peak of Brown. Every move is calibrated, the band(s) are at their best, yet the whole thing is utterly insane, sheer will driving a music in the most heroic way. The long version of the title track cuts the more well-known, sped-up version (made in Nashville, actually). "I Don't Want Nobody To Give Me Nothing" is ferocious, on the truly "live" material he charges through songs like a lion tamer dancing in a cage (well, a pretty big cage), and "Mother Popcorn" sounds like the marriage of James Brown and Albert Ayler. Too bad you can't get the 1969 King LP "It's A New Day" on a CD, because that bookends this music quite nicely.
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Format: Audio CD
As a long time fan of Mr. Dynamite , I have collected a LOT of his recordings, and although I do especially love the Live Apollo shows especially 62 and 67 , THIS recording IMO runs circles around those two. It's the JB's with Bootsy and Catfish Collins and Bobby Byrd and Fred Wesley that make this record SMOKE !.........It's actually from two different dates and two different bands , but it ALL works !!!........If your a fan or a newcomer who wants to hear what " The Hardest Working Man in Showbusiness " is REALLY all about , then pick this record up ........You'll soon understand what all the fuss is about ....Enjoy !
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Format: Audio CD
Maybe the reason i don't like hip-hop is because i heard this album (and many others) by the master of minimalism and soul. James Brown released a lot of hot albums, but this one oozes sweat and energy. That simple. Listening to this album is like standing at a primordial swamp at the dawn of creation: a TON of contemporary black music is directly indebted to and descended from J.B and especially this album. Just *$^@+++$&&!&!~ing buy it already
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By A Customer on February 18, 2001
Format: Audio CD
This is an awesome performance by the Minister of the New Super Super Heavy Funk, Mr James Brown (b 1928). Mr Harry Weinger writes that SEX MACHINE hit numbre 4 on the R&B charts, as well as numbre 29 on the Pop charts. "Through band upheaval and changing tastes, James Brown never broke stride. With his bad self." This CD chronicles the transition that occured in 1970 when the band members changed. His great band of the sixties walked out, literally, just prior to a show. Mr Brown, undaunted, introduced a hungry young group featuring Mr William (Bootsy) Collins. "Of course, James Brown made it work." writes Mr Harry Weinger. The funky bass of Mr Collins is already a standout on "Get Up I Feel Like Being a Sex Machine." My favourite with the young band is "Give It Up Or Turnit A Loose" because it has a heavy funk rhythm with Mr Brown rapping profusely. Without a doubt, the former band is technically superior in my mind. They provide a strong platform for Mr Brown who even plays organ on the jazzey instrumental, "Spinning Wheel". I get excited hearing them crank it up in the finish with "I Can't Stand Myself..." and "Mother Popcorn". If you are interested in Super Heavy Funk Bass & Drum, or in the musical career of Mr James Brown, this CD will be interesting to you.
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