The Garritys are back, and this time Shawn and Tracy take the party from the graveyard directly to the dance floor like only VulGarrity can. Funkeology is the third full-length album from the renowned sibling duo, known for one of the most entertaining live rock shows around. If you have never experienced a live VulGarrity set, make plans to be at Fête on December 22.
Funkeology is 40 minutes of signature VulGarrity spiced with some feel-good swagger. While listening to an advance copy Shawn sent over earlier this week, I kept thinking back to the 2011 WBRU Rock Hunt, where VulGarrity ran the table with an assist from C&C Music Factory. Yes, a pumped-up cover of "Everybody Dance Now" (in its entirety, no less) had the room jumping. By the time they dropped a cover of Peter Gabriel's "Shock the Monkey," it was Game Over. And of course they showed up to judge the 2012 Rock Hunt in full Mad Max regalia, with newlywed Tracy Garrity-Martone dolled up like Wendy O. Williams Beyond Thunderdome. These two take pride in having plenty of serious fun, and that spirit carries over across the 11 new tracks.
Funkeology is a more pop-friendly affair than 2010s Dance 2 the Grave or the '08 debut If You Sing It, They Will Hum (still a must-have). Heck, we're talking hands-in-the-air anthems ("Midnight Sunshine," "Wheel of Fortune") and a spunky rap number featuring ill.e.gal (VulGarrity recently shared a bill with local rap greats DirtyDurdie). The trademark intricate grooves remain intact on the first single "Middle Finger Machine Gun," and Tracy's vocals steal the show on the title track and "Karma's Got a Gun."
I asked Shawn if there was a conscious decision to funk things up prior to recording the new album."In terms of the songwriting process, we stopped paying attention to genres a long time ago — where we look for inspiration changes and evolves as time goes on," he said.
"We've always been inspired by funk and dance music, and I guess that just came across more this time around.
"We made up the term 'funkeology' but it actually has nothing to do with funk music," Garrity continued. "To us it signifies following your heart and doing what you love as long as it has a positive impact on the world around you."
Expect plenty of new material laced with some VulGarrity classics, and Shawn revealed there could be an INXS cover in the works. (Do yourself a favor and hit up VulGarrity.com for a jaw-dropping Whitney Houston tribute jam of "The Greatest Love of All" and "I Wanna Dance With Somebody." Holy shit!). The new album will be officially released on January 8, but a limited number of copies will be available at the CD release show.
VULGARRITY'S FUNKEOLOGY CD RELEASE PARTY WITH SIRSY + MALYSSA BELLAROSA + MOTHER OF DYLAN | Saturday, December 22 @ 8:30 pm | Fête, 103 Dike St, Providence | $6 | 401.383.1112 | fetemusic.com | vulGarrity.com