On Dr Hypenstein, out now on Wooden Hat Records, Redtenbacher's Funkestra brings their danceable brand of funk to 2015, laying down 13 of their funkiest grooves yet, from the fluty can't-stop-your-feet sounds of the title track to the heavy crunch of "Swagger," then letting the atomic dogs out with "Cave Canem" and the percolating "Funktionality." This is the eighth album from Redtenbacher's Funkestra, which regularly performs at (and packs) London's legendary 606 Club and other established London venues. Guest musicians have included Fred Wesley, Alfred "Pee Wee" Ellis, "Doc" Kupka, Lee Thornburg and Lenny Pickett from Tower of Power, Eric Krasno of Soulive, Stanton Moore of Galactic and the horn sections from Prince, Incognito and The Brand New Heavies. London-based bassist, composer, arranger and bandleader Stefan Redtenbacher is the mastermind behind Dr Hypenstein, which includes the bass-driven "Bass Face" and "Bassbulator," the dare-you-not-to-move "Right On It" and "Supergalactic," and expands on previous material to incorporate electronic sounds in all the while standing proud with the history of funk. The Austrian-born Redtenbacher fell for Herbie Hancock and Maceo Parker early on, then studied at the Vienna Conservatory and Boston's Berklee College of Music, and has recorded and performed with legends including Steve Winwood, Jack Bruce, Amy Winehouse, Lulu, Mica Paris, and Herb Alpert. After listening to Redtenbacher’s Funkestra’s new album “Dr Hypenstein.” writer Juliet Eastland had the following to say: “Remember those old James Bond movies? The ones where Sean Connery is gunning his Aston Martin, taking the twisty highway curves on two wheels, at 80mph, one arm around a curvaceous babe in the passenger seat? Carousing and cocktails await, if he can just outwit the gun-blazing villain on his tail. He’s got flair, suaveness, and a sense of humor about the whole situation. He may be moving fast, but he never breaks a sweat. “I kept recalling this image as I listened to the propulsively funky Dr. Hypenstein. Led by bassist Stefan Redtenbacher (full disclosure: he and I were classmates at music school in the 1990s), the Funkestra executes technically dazzling feats – careening through thickets of melody, slaloming around complex rhythmic turns, and stopping on a dime just before the whole contraption goes right over the cliff. And the whole thing is tossed off with a jauntiness and sense of humor that turn what could be a soulless technical presentation into a riotous odyssey.
“At several points, in fact, I found myself laughing out loud. Redtenbacher’s fluency in the language of effects makes for some wildly imaginative sounds: listen carefully and you’ll hear curlicues, boings, Framptonesque “talking,” squeaks, wah-wahs, and space sounds, among others. The instruments grumble, laugh, chatter, and squeal. And did I mention they never, ever let up on the funk?
“So sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the music. Like James Bond, you’ll get to your destination safely, but it’s going to be a hell of a ride.”