ISLEY BROTHERS: IF YOU WANT TO GET INTO SOMETHING

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Isley Brothers: Get Into Something + Take Inventory
From Get Into Something (T-Neck, 1969)

Partly because I’ve always thought of the Isley Brothers as 1970s mega-stars, I forget: 1) that their careers began in 1959 with the original, wedding-rocking “Shout!” and 2) that when the left Tamla to start their own imprint, T-Neck, they recorded and released a full three albums in less than a year.

Get Into Something was the last of that trio and supposedly it’s “the most valuable and highly sought-after Isley Brothers album.” I’m a little on that claim but whatever: it’s a very good album and the title track is a nearly 7.5 minute proto-funk jam that gives drummer George Moreland a 16+ bar break to do his thing. I imagine that the band had a great time taping this in the studio since there seemed to be little urgency in recording a tight, radio-friendly single.

“Take Inventory” was the only song off the LP I was previously familiar with; it feels like it was trying to recapture the same magical groove as “It’s Your Thing” and while it doesn’t quite get there – what could? – it’s still pretty damn good, especially with that quick horn opening (I’m imagining a good DJ routine of just cutting back and forth on those horns).

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