A significantly marked improvement from previous ventures into the waters of funk-hop, State of Health from Idiot Grins no longer finds the band tiptoeing through the myre of cultural appropriation but rather a cultural celebration. Employing help from the Byrd Sisters on their latest record, Idiot Grins keep it tight without loosing sight of a clear and objective genre-stop. Overall, the gang is having fun and on a more refined platform at that.
One of the most notable progressions in sound for the group is found in the extensive nature and evolution of vocals, particularly in Evan Eustis’ command at the helm of the band. A much more assured captain for the Grins, tracks such as “Unkind” are fleshed out with more force and conviction. Similarly, “That’s Some Funky Business” melds the retro-soul sensibilities of the Byrd Sisters with the California swinging sound in a combination that comes out drenched in that funk.
Mastered in Tennessee, State of Health has an old-school bohemian vibe throughout it, running in the same circuits as Tower of Power or any other bands who dare to take up the mantel of funk in present day. It’s difficult to imagine a project such as this that is not steeped in nostalgia – but it works for the outfit as whole.
One may not have imagine this brand of music to thrive in the year of our lord (2018) but lo and behold – it has – let us embrace its sentimentality in all it has to offer.