Parliament, Motor Booty Affair

This was a hard one to snub, but even as a long time P-Funker I just can't bring myself to like it. There's some legitimately funky tracks on this, the third and final album of Parliament's late 1970s peak, but it just as notably portrays the decline of a band no longer able to flourish under George Clinton's contemporary thematic and (more relevantly) management excesses. The singles off this disc are uninspired and derivative, especially the perplexingly beloved "Aqua Boogie," a cynical retread of the core groove from last album's "Flash Light" backed with an extended acid jazz coda and a cameo from Sir Nose d'Voidoffunk. Worse, by this point Clinton's idea of high art had devolved into 12-year-old mentality pictures of ample female backends in various suggestive poses in the album title (literally putting the Booty in Motor Booty, doncherknow), a flimsy attempt at a concept album by literally submerging it such that several of the vocalists sound like they were gargling in the bathroom, and one of the stupidest metaphors for the male organ in the otherwise entertaining "Mr. Wiggles." And "Rumpofsteelskin"? Really? High points come from the album's lesser known tracks, particularly "One of Those Funky Things" and "Liquid Sunshine," both solid grooves with good beats performed competently, and to a lesser extent the album's title track, which mercifully doesn't dwell on its rapidly annoying "Howard Codsell" monologue. Unfortunately, he then sells it short by closing with the unoriginal "Deep" whose nine minutes of phoned-in riffs could have come from any number of bands around that time and boasts the lyrical complexity of a kindergarten textbook. Despite the first track's insistence, this most certainly is your "average 50-yard dash of funk" by a self-described "slithering idiot"; Clinton could have, and has, done better than this, and you'd do better to look for his brighter spots instead. (Content: relentless use of 'funk' as a euphemism; puerile references and imagery.)