Stepkids, The / Stepkids, The
Album: Stepkids, The   Collection:General
Artist:Stepkids, The   Added:Oct 2011
Label:Stones Throw  

A-File Activity
Add Date: 2011-12-11 Pull Date: 2012-02-12
Week Ending: Jan 15 Dec 18
Airplays: 1 3

Recent Airplay
1. Jan 08, 2012: Everything.
Shadows On Behalf
4. Dec 13, 2011: madame psychosis
La La
2. Dec 14, 2011: Brownian Motion
Shadows On Behalf
5. Dec 07, 2011: Soul Spectrum
Shadows On Behalf
3. Dec 14, 2011: Soul Spectrum
Santos And Ken
6. Nov 30, 2011: Soul Spectrum
Legend In My Own Mind

Album Review
Allen Thayer
Reviewed 2011-12-07
The Stepkids / The Stepkids
By the Ambassador

The Stepkids are the first “band” signed to Stones Throw, a label best known for hip-hop pioneers like Madlib or soul singers like Mayer Hawthorne (before he went major label) or Alow Blacc. The group is made up of three young white dudes from Connecticut with serious jazz chops and R&B resumes with the likes of Alicia Keys. Their sound is a mix of old school psychedelic soul – think Sly & Family Stone or early funkadelic – but a three piece with tighter songs. The retro vibe is there, but this is not a Sharon Jones kinda thing as the group sounds fresh and new. A fantastic album from start to finish. Play them all, or the ones I like. FCC Clean. I recommend tracks: #4, #5, #6, #7.

1) Intro 1:03 – sounds like an instrumental snippet from voodoo funk Dr. John; 2) Brain Ninja 2:07 Sly Stone meets Temptations meets Funkadelic bouncy bass line, eerie keys, funk-box drum machine and swirling harmonies; 3) Suburban Dream 3:14 - tale of teenage angst set to a spacy, plodding, psychedelic backdrop; 4)** Shadows on Behalf 3:49 – like waking up from a psychedelic daydream, with Motown rhythm section, lots of keyboard and percussion textures and fantastic vocal harmonies; 5)** Legend in My Own Mind 3:56 – a slower number in a hazy, blunted Sly & the Family Stone style down to the hipster vibrato lead vocal. Great vocal arrangements with voices moving in and out with eerie string accents; 6)** Santos and Ken 3:34 – opens with some la las then a funky party-vibe punctuated by string stabs and gurgling clavinet that reminds me of a pop-friendly funkadelic; 7)** La La 5:40 – wispy tune with ambient intro and soaring back-up vocals (lots of la las) with almost a baroque feel and strings again are prominent with interesting keyboard textures; 8)* Wonderfox 3:24 – mysterious song about a mythical wonderfox with a groove that builds to a soul-clapping chorus with spacy keyboards and parliamentfunkadelic gobbledygook nonsense lyrics; 9)* Cup Half Full 3:07 – possibly the most traditional sounding tune on the album, that is until the reverb button gets pressed on the drum track – a pop-soul number in a Curtis Mayfield (impressions era) or Sly Stone (family stone era) style; 10) Outro 1:11 - same groove as intro to close out this killer album.

Track Listing
1. Intro   6. Santos And Ken
2. Brain Ninja   7. La La
3. Suburban Dream   8. Wonder Fox
4. Shadows On Behalf   9. Cup Half Full
5. Legend In My Own Mind   10. Outro