Released in 1975 in the same month that the band (who for that album going by the name of Funkadelic) dropped an album in, Parliament brought out "Chocolate City" and found that with this same 'classic' line-up that included George Clinton leading the way as the producer and then the likes of Bootsy Collins, Bernie Worrell and Eddie Hazel all added into the mix that was seen in Funkadelic too. These Funk pioneers brought what is considered to be a classic from them as they moved things on with progressive, and more lively material than in the past.
1. "Chocolate City"
The album begins with a heavy tuned and one that finds them clearly moving on signifincantly from where they were on the last album (that hadn't even come more than a month before this one) and you see that with the inclusion of more electronic instruments to the mix as George Clinton takes on the role of the lead vocalist just coming with some spoken word about the 'Chocolate City' of Washington, D.C..
2. "Ride On"
They throw down another single with this one and you see that in it they throw down Funk like you wouldn't be able to get at any point prior to this where they come in with some party-based material that has them getting loose with it and bringing out stuff that is bound to appeal to those who have grown with their Rock-based material from 1970. It is a fly jam and perfectly on-trend for the time when it dropped.
In this one you see that they simply build on what came on the track prior to this one and come out with a tune that is built up from them pulling out nothing but the funkiest grooves to assist them as they get their listeners up just to get down with them. It is composed so that it suits this sort of atmosphere with a group of artists on the vocals together as they sing of the 'oneness' that is central to The Funk.
4. Side Effects"
You see that here they simply aren't capable of losing the momentum that they have been able to build up to this point as they come out with a funky jam that has them slamming down more of the very compete Funk material that sounds like nothing else anyone was capable of until that point. Bootsy and Clinton share the vocals in this one and they keep you in the hyped mood to experience such heavy material.
5. "What Comes Funky"
As if they had somehow become bored to any degree of this side of the music, they come down with a jam that takes on a similar structure to all the others leading up to this point, but in this case they hold it together in a short, sharp burst of funkiness that you can't possibly have any problems getting into as they get down to one where they show just how impactful the Funk can be when it has been allowed to come out in this way.
6. "Let Me Be"
Bernie Worrell shows just how funky you can be on the keys to kick this one off in a different way to how they others had come out as you see that in it you get one that has George Clinton and Vivian Lewis coming out with a soulful cut to break up everything on the release and show added depth to it. I wasn't quite as pleased with this one as I was with the others, but it still adds to the record in its own way.
7. "If It Don't Fit"
This is another farily short one on the album and one that finds them coming out with a fly jam that brings through the sorts of things that they would go on to be known for as they had finally got off all of the experimental work that sounded quite alternative in order to come out with something that has the ability to appeal to much wider audiences and get them out of the underground so that they could spread 'oneness'.
8. "I Misjudged You"
You see that in this one you get them bringing through another of the low-paced tunes that changes the direction of the music massively and makes you see what else they have to offer the listeners. I really can't say that I was having this one (where the last one in this style was alright) as you see that here it simply isn't happening and they get back towards their alternative ways that don't quite do it for me.
The album ends with this one as you see that they come out with a final party jam to lift up the atmosphere and leave the listeners with a good lasting impression of where the band took things on this album. They do a powerful one with lots of kicks to liven you up massively and show the direction that Funk music would take from this point onwards as they lead the pack and showed people what was right.
The weaknesses of this album are clear, but you see that generally this is an extremely high-quality album from the band and one that moved Parliament-Funkadelic on to bigger and better places so that they were able to find out exactly where to take things from this point in their career.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Chocolate City
2 Ride On
4 Side Effects
5 What Comes Funky
6 Let Me Be
7 If It Don't Fit (Don't Force It)
8 I Misjudged You
9 Big Footin'
10 If It Don't Fit (Don't Force It)
11 I Misjudged You
12 Common Law Wife