With squiggling synths, irresistible rhythms, and a team of vocalists (including fav Greg Grease), ZULUZULUU look to give Afrofuturist funk from the 70s a modern update. The nods and odes to both P-Funk and Prince abound throughout their debut, but the fresh energy and defiant bursts of both joy and frustration make What's The Price stand on its own.
The record kicks off with ZULUZULUU's cover of “Black Maybe” (originally penned by Mr. Stevie Wonder), coaxing the listener out from the elegiatic opening to the explosive future-funk conclusion. The stunning statement of pain and optimism is expanded on in the title track, which flat out asks the question of what's the price of trying to survive in an oppressive and racist society. It's the band's mission statement; not a complaint, it's merely a list of bullshit they refuse to give up in the face of. It's a question at the heart of every song, particularly the standout “Fall Behind.” With synths that would make George Clinton jealous, the band honors his legacy by doing not just taking inspiration from his aesthetic, but also his 50 year legacy of using it to ask tough questions. What's The Price is available now though ZULUZULUU's Bandcamp, Itunes, Spotify.By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK contributor