Published Apr 13, 2020With the dawn of CDs came the birth of the record-digging compilation, bringing obscure '70s funk and R&B to the surface while inspiring artists like Fatboy Slim, the Roots and the Beastie Boys in the process. Three decades later, Ramble Jon Krohn (a.k.a. RJD2) lays down an approximation of the later electro/hip hop funk era with The Fun Ones.
Across 14 tracks and an unfortunate 55-minutes, Krohn structures tracks around snippets of recorded conversation with his friends, including Kid Koala, Mr. Lif and Phonte Coleman. Allowing a single instrument to carry each track, including guitar on the Funkadelic-lite "No Helmet Up Indianola", saxophone on the vintage "And It Sold For 45k", and vocals on the abysmal "Pull Up On Love" (featuring STS and Khari Mateen), much of Krohn's seventh LP refuses to offer much more than the novelty of its sound, lacking the grit and curiosity of his earlier work.
As its title suggests, The Fun Ones is RJD2's party record — but, unfortunately, it's one of those themed parties that seemed better in theory. (RJ's Electrical Connections)