Album Review: Madame Freak & The Funky Fever – “Follow the Crack”

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Madame Freak & The Funky Fever prove to be as intriguing as their name. Fronted by the vibrant singer, Jessi Teich, known for her powerhouse jazz and soul singing, is joined by an equally as talented band which hails from Europe. Just unleashing their newest release, Follow the Crack, the record takes you on an unexpected musical journey that will leave your ears ringing…in a good way. Filled with 11-stunning tracks, sit back and get ready for the ride that is Madame Freak & The Funky Fever.

Opening the album is the retro laced piece “Funky Boriel,” a lovely first taste of what Follow the Crack has to offer. Immediately the listener will be drawn to Teich’s outstanding and hypnotic vocals as they glide flawlessly throughout the song. Prominent slapped bass is accompanied with a jazz saxophone which is a rare find in music these days. “Owl!” is up next and will mostly likely become a listener favorite. The track instantly captivated me with its Kimbra inspired spunk, with a great dose of funk infused. “Owl!” will surely have people on the dance floor quickly.

“Like It…Or Not” is a charming number that has a bit of 1990s tendencies thrown into the sound. Not that it is a bad thing. Teich’s vocals surround every element of the song, which really makes her stand out as a vocalist. “Ritournelle,” brings a lovely jazz element further to light on the record. The vocal harmonies make this one an instant favorite, as it is one of the catchiest pieces on the record by far. “Ride It,” also brings a dose of electricity onto the album, as Teich’s scats over a portion of the song. This is truly unique in this day in age, and also a nice breath of fresh air in the current state of music.

“Another World,” flows nicely throughout, with hints of horns, accordions, and swirling guitars. “Chaos,” one of the softest tracks on the record, delights, with seductive tendencies. The bass takes on a form of it’s own in this piece, and haunts throughout. Up next is “Pamplemousse,” which brings Follow the Crack, back up to speed, tempo wise that is. Teich’s somewhat choppy vocals are fast yet effective.

“Electrify,” is when Teich brings out a seductive side to her voice. Alongside bright  harmonies, the piece is brought to life with resonating guitars, maracas and an array of other instruments that all fit together nicely. “The Last Waltz,” has a Broadway feel to it, and is also heavy on the accordion. If any group can make an accordion not feel out of place in modern music, it’s Madame Freak & The Funky Fever. Well done without a doubt! Closing the record is “Brand New Love,” which has a vintage 1970s vibe. Teich’s vocals are right on key, as the elements are reminiscent of Earth, Wind & Fire. Upbeat strumming and keyboards further breathe new life into the track, creating quite a masterpiece.

Madame Freak & The Funky Fever have created quite a brilliant record with Without a Crack. Bringing to life the best elements of music’s past, this album is a must have for 2013. Don’t only take my word but give it a listen as well. You will be pleasantly surprised with this gem. Hopefully we will be hearing more of Madame Freak & The Funky Fever very soon. I’m on the edge of my seat…

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