The Black City: Italian funk three-piece unveils album 'Wake Up. The Funk' that is drenched in Latin, blues, soul, rock and reggae roots

The Black City

Italian funk collective The Black City is releasing their brand new album, entitled, Wake Up.  The Funk. 

In the wake of 2019, the Turin-based three-piece has set out on the road throughout Europe for the Wake Up.  The Funk tour.  And wherever they go, funk follows.

According to the band statement:  “Infected by that signature funky groove that gets everyone moving, whatever the venue, the outcome is the same…the crowd dancing and having a good time.  This is The Black City effect; they transfer their audience to where music lives.”

Wake up.  The Funk contains an unmatched invigorating energy.  The record is a strong sampling of The Black City’s work and more to come.  The album encompasses a bit of reggae and island/tropical flavor added into the mix.  This pervades on “Stone Free,” where the guitar licks are daring and freeing and the vocals are reverb-filled coming across as cavernous touched with reggae notes and on “Hour Of The Beasties,” where the drums are fast and pulsating with an infections energy and funky guitars fill this song that resounds with reggae influences.

A lot of these tracks are brimming with funk and resonate with a groovy psychedelic twist such as on the title-track, which contains groovy funk tunes where the rhythms guitar sounds off in an electric way and the beat is jostling and groovy, on “Be Quiet” that starts off with the funky sounds elicited from the electric guitars and the vocals are soulful spewed out in a rush as the lines speed into one another and on “Cage,” where the reverberating and melodious guitar riffs paves the start of this song with funky grooves and underlining the reverb-drenched guitars is an electronic beat and synths giving off an arresting and hypnotic vibe.

The record is filled with a funk pulse.  Oftentimes the music is hypnotic with the vocals spewed out in a rush and the lines blending into one another.  This is evident on “Original Sound,” with notes of the blues that can be detected in the rhythms as well as highlighting nodes of reggae and an island/tropical flavor.  The sound is altogether soulful with a sultry vibe that pervades with a mellow appeal.  This is laidback music that contains some energetic scatting, giving a blue-enthused pulse.  A radio-active guitar solo bleats out into the maelstrom of instrumentals, waking in its splendor a captive audience.

Wake Up.  The Funk contains a sound that is uplifting and filled with good feelin’ positive vibes.  This is true on “Funk Time (Remix),” where the funky grooves coming from the guitars offer up an exciting soulful sound and on “Goosebumps (Remix),” where the funk-induced guitars pave the start of this song and the vocals are soulful and touched with notes of the blues.

This is a deeply experimental project.  The record contains an eclectic arrangement of songs touching base with everything from funk, soul, rock and blues.  The music is altogether contagious brimming with catchy and upbeat tunes.  The Black City eases us into a sound that is saturated by the tailoring of these talented musicians that comprises of Martin Craig (guitar and vocals), Simone Bellavia (bass and vocals) and Caldero (percussions and vocals), blending soul, blues and reggae into this funk enthused melding of a good time.

With that in mind, The Black City’s funk soul will not fade in time.  Or rather sharpen in focus, their subliminal colors erupting in symphonic hues before your ever eyes and ears long after the record has stopped spinning.  Black City is here to stay.

According to the band:  “Inspired by the greats that came before us, we play the funk music we love, but influenced by our own stories as musicians – blues, rock, Latin and even reggae all find their way into this album that asks to be listened to actively and not passively as we are becoming so used to.  Take a little time to enjoy listening to a story, each song its own unique chapter rooted in pure funk.”

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My Nguyen

My Nguyen is an album reviewer from San Diego, CA. She regularly contributes to Her work has appeared in the following journals: Quietpoly, Community Voices, Espresso 1, The Whistling Fire, The Pedestal Magazine, The Straylight Magazine, Baby Lawn Literature, and Conceit Magazine.

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