Kleeer Get Tough The Kleeer Anthology 1978-1985 (BBR)
This takes me “Back To School” like Bunny Wailer in 1978 freaking out in the school premises with the killer bass line and the strings of “Keep Your Body Working”, on repeat in my disco boogiefied mind. This anthology does capture a majority of the Kleeer catalogue minus a few I would have personally included. Naturally singles of the first album “Keep Your Body Working”, “Tonight’s The Night” and “I Love To Dance” are on here. I’m most pleased that the silent album sleeper, the sophisticated mellow boogie bullet “Happy Me” from the debut album’s is included . Also on CD 1 are the two major tracks off the second album “Winners” and the astral travelling “Open Your Mind”. Showing Kleeer’s diversity I was always partial to the rollocking funk boogie groove of “Get Tough” and the funk rocker “De Kleeer Ting”. Wayne Dickson who complied this opens on CD 2 with a favourite of mine, so much so I have the 7 inch, 12 inch with instrumental and album versions of “Taste The Music”. My question to you Wayne, with a smile I may add is, how could you leave off “I Shall Get Over” Wayne? This certainly journeys through Kleeer’s evolution of change as the years roll on, so by the 4th “Get Ready” album in 1982 their sound becomes slightly more psychedelic. There is a touch of ‘punk funk’ on the 12 inch cut of “She Loves Me” featuring Rick James on synths. By this time Woody Cunningham’s lead vocals are now a prominent feature and evident more so on the “Intimate Connection” album. With the exception of the funky “Break”, “Next Time It’s For Real”, the vocoder voiced “Tonight”, The inspiring “Go For It” and “You Did It Again” represent the mid 80’s moog classic 6th album. Kleeer’s final lucky 7th album showcases them embracing electro funk further, finishing of with “Take Your Heart Away”, my album fave “Never Cry Again” and a mellower “Lay Ya Down EZ”. Interviews with the remaining co founders Paul Crutchfield and Richard Lee document the east coast “Kleeer Ting” ethos with a heartfelt tribute to Woody Cunningham and Norman Durham who passed a year apart a few years ago. This certainly is a “Get Tough” anthology to have in your collection.