Feb. 13 • 20th Century Theatre

Feb 4, 2011 at 2:06 pm

Galactic has always been the shifting sum of its evolving parts. In the beginning, the band was a synthesis of the Washington, D.C., Go Go scene (courtesy of guitarist/D.C. transplants Jeff Raines and bassist Robert Mercurio) and the wide-ranging influences of the band’s New Orleans birthplace (by way of keyboardist Rich Vogel, saxophonist Ben Ellman and drummer Stanton Moore, all Louisiana natives). With NOLA old-school R&B vocalist Theryl “Houseman” DeClouet at the mic, Galactic became a furious and edgy Funk/Jam outfit with an unbeatable second-line pulse, but several unforeseen events conspired to derail whatever direction Galactic’s members thought they were following.

In 2004, Houseman left the band after complications from diabetes forced him from the road. Not long after, a tour with underground Hip Hop icon Lyrics Born gave the group the idea to replace Houseman with guest MCs. But just as Galactic began work on the concept, the project was nearly destroyed by Hurricane Katrina’s unblinking cruelty. When the band finally realized its sonic vision, the end result was 2007’s mesmerizing and game-changing From the Corner to the Block, a perfect hybrid of Galactic’s Jam-fried Funk and New Orleans’ underground Hip Hop congregation.

On Ya-Ka-May, released early last year, Galactic invited a dazzling array of guests from the NOLA scene, from legends like Allen Toussaint, Irma Thomas and the Rebirth Brass Band to young Bounce (a New Orleans brand of Southern Rap) talents like Katey Red, Big Freedia and Cheeky Blakk. The collective cooked up a multi-genre, multi-generational gumbo liberally spiced and spiked with brilliant execution and pure inspiration.

Galactic’s current winter tour takes a page from that same funky cookbook as the band incorporates a variety of fantastic guests into its shows. On this leg of the tour, special guests include Living Colour vocalist Corey Glover, Rebirth Brass Band trombonist Corey “Boe Money” Henry and the L.A.-based band Orgone, immaculate funkmeisters in their own right.

Be prepared to shake your bacon; Galactic is turning up the heat once again.

Galactic plays the 20th Century Theatre Sunday, Feb. 13 with guests Corey Glover, Corey Henry and Orgone.