Personnel: Idris Muhammad (vocals, drums, tom tom); Frank Floyd (vocals); Eric Gale , Hiram Bullock, Hugh McCracken, Charlie Brown (guitar); Margaret Ross (harp); Jeremy Steig (flute); David Tofani (soprano saxophone); Michael Brecker (tenor saxophone); Ronnie Cuber (baritone saxophone); Jon Faddis, Randy Brecker (trumpet); Cliff Carter (keyboards, synthesizer); Rubens Bassini, Sue Evans (percussion); Ray Simpson, Zachary Sanders, Bill Eaton (background vocals).
Arranger: David Matthews .
Accompanied by Hiram Bullock (guitar), Cliff Carter (keyboards), Wilber Bascomb (bass), Jeremy Steig (flute) and others, Idris Muhammad ventures into the world of pop and R&B, annoying die-hard jazz fans. Limp and uninspired vocals hurt "Could Heaven Ever Be Like This"; the track is good and could have stood alone with instrument(s) replacing the vocal parts. If you like African rhythms underneath a haunting flute, then you'll love "Camby Bolongo" -- Sue Evans supplies percussions and Randy Brecker provides a searing trumpet solo.
While blatantly commercial, "Turn this Mutha Out" offers some dynamic interplay between Bascomb's funky bass vamp, and Bullock's compelling guitar work. The tune landed on the R&B chart in the States and got considerable airplay in Britain. "Tasty Cakes" uses the same lineup including complimentary musicians as "Mutha" on a shameless attempt to sell records. "Crab Apple," aided by Michael Brecker's tenor sax, jams; the midtempo strut is nasty, particularly when Carter works his synthesizer. "Moon Hymn" is a duo tempo head tune that swipes a bit of War's "Slipping into Darkness." Eric Gale is the guitarist on "Say What," a fusion of jazz and funk. Muhammad never solos, he didn't write any of the songs, he didn't arrange any, and he didn't produce any. So why is he the leader and the album in his name? ~ Andrew Hamilton