In 1981, a lot of rock & rollers were claiming that the disco era was officially over. Disco, of course, never really died – a lot of the dance-pop, house music, Hi-NRG, and Latin freestyle that was recorded in the '80s and '90s was essentially disco – but as far as many of the radio stations and record company A&R men of 1981 were concerned, disco was dead. And that was bad news for Chic, a group closely identified with the disco era. Even though a lot of Chic's work had as much to do with funk and soul as it did with the Euro-disco sound, Chic was unable to live down its reputation as a disco group. But Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards gave it a try with 1981's Take It Off, an admirable, if uneven, project that finds the group downplaying the Euro-disco elements.
CHIC's third album has been praised by many as their very finest, yet - perhaps because of the impossible task of surpassing two monster albums (C'est CHIC + We Are Family) - I feel this comes off a wee bit disappointing. Of course, there was the ambiguous "Good Times", possibly CHIC's very greatest track with Nard's classic bass line, this first single has made history of its own, and there's no denying the splendid quality of this record. "A Warm Summer Night" is a sensuous instrumental that belongs among my favourites with its corny "Te quiero papi" whisper. Needless to say, the music is faultlessly played, repeating the theme over and over again.