A Certain Ratio \ Force [LTMCD 2552]
Expanded re-release of the fifth album by iconic post-punk funk outfit A Certain Ratio, originally released by Factory Records in November 1986 and described by drummer Donald Johnson as "the Mike Tyson of funk".
Force marked a return to form for Ratio, mixing the robust funk grooves of lead single Mickey Way with more downtempo tracks, as well as Si Firmi O Grido, the percussive tour de force that still provides a reliable climax to live performances. In addition to pin-sharp rhythm and groove the album also displayed a certain pop sensibility, courtesy of guest vocalist Corinne Drewery of Swing Out Sister. The album was also one of the first to utilise the brand new Akai S900 sampler.
This expanded CD remaster adds five bonus tracks. These include flipside tracks from the Mickey Way single, a hard-to-find remix of Bootsy by Robert Racic (previously only available on 12" through Factory Australasia) and The Runner, issued on a limited edition Italian EP.
1. Only Together
3. Fever 103
4. Naked & White
5. Mickey Way
6. And Then She Smiles
7. Take Me Down
9. Nostromo A Gogo
11. Si Firmi O Grido
12. Bootsy (Racic Remix)
13. The Runner
"From the stop-watch bass and drums of Mickey Way to the startlingly optimistic snap and crackle of Only Together and Bootsy, Force almost dispenses with the expected melancholy and puts some of the euphoria of the funk to work" (NME, 11/1986)
"Ratio have jerked from their sleeves a fine pop record. Force is bright, tight, tense and coherent; a glorious achievement" (Melody Maker, 11/1986)
"The moment they hit the groove that resulted in Force they gained a musical joy that belied their reputation as sullen boys with heavy brows. This proved to be the slab of quality funk to which they always aspired, and is just so refreshing here and now" (The Quietus, 03/2010)
"Factory's funk contenders get over their initial cold, long mac grooves and play a more polished but still rhythmic jazzy pop. Fans will laud the two 12-inch bonus cuts too" (Mojo, 05/2010)
"Faultless funk. Each track is superb, with Fever 103's running water intro being particularly memorable, as is the gyrating, thriving instrumental Mickey Way. How can the perfect pop of And Then She Smiles have been ignored for so long? Five out of five" (Record Collector, 05/2010)
"The band's return to its funk roots, with some deep, jerky grooves. Force has aged really well" (Blurt-online, 04/2010)