Throbbing Gristle
20 Jazz Funk Greats


4.0
excellent

Review

by red0 USER (14 Reviews)
December 13th, 2009 | 28 replies | 11,804 views


Release Date: 1979 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Well, it's quite a trip.

5 of 5 thought this review was well written

In the 70s, it can only be imagined how much of a shock to the psyche Throbbing Gristle’s music may have been at the time. A group of ambitious young English kids with a bunch of random instruments, and various objects managed to create albums and albums that are, simply, the soundtrack of a nightmare. In all honesty, however, Throbbing Gristle’s music is barely listenable. It’s so unnatural and dark that you are left kind of confused and disarmed at the end of a song. They really don’t have much tempo, resident oddball Genesis Breyer P-Orridge croons in a monotone voice over throbbing beats (pun intended), screams tracked in the background, and bass sounds that make you want to throw up. If ever there was an album to make you uneasy or scared, any Throbbing Gristle album would suffice. However, their most successful one, the sarcastically titled 20 Jazz Funk Greats is their best.

Best, however, being a subjective word. Throbbing Gristle’s music is pretty amazing if you like visiting the outer reaches of the dark parts of the human mind. Persuasion is an easy indicator of what’s to be found on this album-as an ominous beat continues to grow but never really grows any louder. P-Orridge croons like a drunk madman “I’ve got a little biscuit tin to keep your panties in, Soiled panties, White panties, School panties, Y-front panties, And I persuade you,” bitterly among female screams and the resonance of a down-tuned Moog synth from the 70s. The song has absolutely no rhythm, movement, or vocal performance at all. It’s just dark and disturbing. There’s a bunch of other songs on here that do a great job of making you uneasy, like What a Day which sounds like something is pounding up behind you, or the echoing Convincing People.

What’s amazing, however, is their ability to pull off some astonishing sounds and beats with little of the technology industrial musicians have at their disposal today. There’s a few beats that sound like you would have heard them on Nine Inch Nails’ Ghosts I-IV. There’s a few imperfections, but it all adds to the mechanical, evil, dark, and droning sound these crazy British guys (and girls) can create. However, I’m not sure I would call them an industrial act. They seem to have influence the Avant-Garde and Post-Rock scene far more than the likes of Skinny Puppy, Ministry, and Nine Inch Nails.

Song by song, Throbbing Gristle’s music is pretty underwhelming and seems as if it’s just being odd for the sake of it. But a whole album of Throbbing Gristle is quite a lot to take in. I mean, you can only take so much of P-Orridge’s droning voice echoing over itself continuously until you listen to the album the whole way through. 20 Jazz Funk Greats will take you to another mind-state from start to finish. With a nice pair of headphones and a dark room, it really will move you. It’s more like having an experience than music, considering Throbbing Gristle is more of an art than music. Cheesy as it may seem, any of Gristle’s CDs, especially this one, really take a few listens to “sink in”. Once they do, damn, it’s a hell of a trip.



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user ratings (106)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Roach
December 13th 2009



2149 Comments


I don't like this.

Meatplow
December 13th 2009



5524 Comments


I love this release. Beachy Head is one of my favourite spooky ambient tracks.

I probably enjoy The Second Annual Report just that little bit more though.

PuddlesPuddles
December 14th 2009



4772 Comments


You can say this gives Meatplow a Throbbing - lol nvm

Sabottheory
December 14th 2009



355 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great review. From the two Throbbing Gristle releases I have heard (The Second Annual Report being the second one), this is the weaker one, but still pretty cool.

Meatplow
December 14th 2009



5524 Comments


You can say this gives Meatplow a Throbbing - lol nvm


oh no you didn't

PuddlesPuddles
December 14th 2009



4772 Comments


:-*

IAJP
July 16th 2010



378 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is a great release, but it is by no means T.G.'s best album, nor would i say it's even their true sound. that aside it is an amazingly consistent, spooky and overall well conceived listen.

IAJP
July 16th 2010



378 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

also, excellent point about it taking a while to sink in. stupidly i broadly proclaimed i preferred psychic TV. just a few days later after listening to this, 1st, 2nd and 3rd annual reports, and an assortment of live albums, i realised just how stupid a statement that was. definitely one of the most compulsively listenable bands in the history of music.

vmcoia91
December 5th 2010



555 Comments


This is very interesting music. Not sure how much I enjoyed it though, but it wasn't bad at all.

Meatplow
December 5th 2010



5524 Comments


get more of their stuff you won't regret it

vmcoia91
December 5th 2010



555 Comments


What should I check out next?

Meatplow
December 5th 2010



5524 Comments


Heathen Earth, The Second Annual Report, D.o.A: The Third and Final Report and In The Shadow of The Sun would be a good order if you ask me

vmcoia91
December 5th 2010



555 Comments


Alright I"ll definitely check those out, thanks.

mistercb
February 20th 2012



6 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Wtf is this shit music? This is no jazz funk. Worst album ever! There aren't even 20 songs on it. I
want my money back.

idkpokeit
June 11th 2013



433 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Not sure why this is considered to be their best material.

somnolence
July 11th 2013



405 Comments


convinced people

Cygnatti
July 11th 2013



21349 Comments


Shit music = 3.0

somnolence
July 11th 2013



405 Comments


Crohn's disease 2.0

Cygnatti
July 11th 2013



21349 Comments


My brother was just explaining that disease to me yesterday.

somnolence
July 11th 2013



405 Comments


coincidentally



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