Every once in a while I get hit from behind with a funk nugget that causes me to twist and turn around to see what hit me. Scorpio Man Theme was one of those moments. Midtempo b-boy friendly drums drop, then laced up with extra percussion, a couple of simple catchy guitars twinkle, the melody comes in via some tasty flute, then the horns drop to make the whole thing sound like a leftover from J.J. Johnson’s Willie Dynamite soundtrack.
The flautist is Erno Haukkala aka Ernie Hawks headlined another 45, Soulful Trip for the Timmion spin-off Nite Club Records back in 2005. Though he seems to spend a lot of time with almost a dozen Finnish bands, his predominate attachment to the funkier side of things is his involvement with The Soul Investigators. Without question they would be my absolute favourite contemporary funk outfit who seem to eschew the generic trappings that many funk bands fall into. They emphasise the importance of space and never clutter up their music. And the idea of anticipation for each instrument’s appearance is paramount. ie; can’t wait for that flute to come back in. Ernie also is adept on the trombone and the tuba.
At a cool 80bpm, the flip’s Journey to the Bottom sounds like something you would listen to in the shallow depths near a shoreline while looking on in wonderment at coral and exotic fish. It has a serene and contemplative mood for aquatic basking.