Monthly Archives: May 2012

Battle-Ska Galactica – Everybody’s Got An Opinion

The long anticipated debut Ska album from Battle-Ska Galactica, ‘Everybody’s Got An Opinion’, prompts me to give my opinion. Sweet and Dandy!

This release is a lively eight-track LP from this seven-piece band. Battle-Ska are an accomplished, tight outfit, determined to get their listeners on the floor skanking with the best.

All the tracks are written by members of the Wellington-based band, and the unmistakable sound of 70s Two Tone comes through the rhythms, with the exception of possibly the last track ‘We Can Go All Night’. This tune throws in a slice of New Orleans Jazz, which belies the roots of the original Jamaican Ska, and states the attitude of the band who you feel would go all night if you let’em. (more…)

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Prince Alexander Top Ten – May 2012

Prince Alexander grew up in Hamilton where he was introduced to reggae music beyond Bob Marley by good friend and long-time reggae selector/collector, DJ Atmosphere.

Through his experiences sitting in on Atmosphere’s radio shows on what was then Contact FM, he quickly gained a thirst for the music and was also inspired by the message of unity and one love. During this time he also began dabbling in music production, and started to amass a collection of synths, samplers and outboard gear, and set about writing music.

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Skitz feat. Rodney P, Roots Manuva, Solo Banton & Darrison – Never

‘Never’ is the stirring new single from UK producer Skitz and is the first shot from his recently released new album. The single features a dark rootical hip-hop flavour and is accompanied by an equally dark and gritty video which shows images of life on London council estates. Each guest delivers outstanding verses and the  track is tied together by Solo Banton’s haunting hook, ‘See them all go down, ya never gonna see their face again…’.

Drawing from traditional reggae themes of ‘toppling Babylon’, particularly in light of the world wide ‘Occupy’ moment and various localized uprisings around the world, the lyrical content of the track is very poignant. As Rodney spits at the end of his first verse, ‘the shit they’ve been telling you ain’t nothing but some lies!’, and Roots Manuva suggests we ‘position the plan with some self sufficiency‘. Good advice Roots.

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Newtown Sound 12″ Vinyl Release – Sirens in the City

Label: Newtown Sound

Release Date: May 2012

‘Sirens in the City’ is the debut vinyl release for iconic New Zealand hip-hop artists, Dam Native. 

A collector’s item pressed in very limited quantities onto pristine 12″ vinyl, the single features influential work spanning two albums and almost two decades from Aotearoa’s pioneers of ‘Horified’ hip-hop.

An instant New Zealand classic, ‘Sirens’, features on Dam Native’s second album, ‘Aotearoa…Nobody Does It Better’. The single also includes a bonus remix from producer/singer Chong Nee, the Album version with a hard-hitting verse from guest MC Tyna, and the Hori Acoustic mix.  (more…)

Dark Angel – Lay Down My Burdens

Lay Down My Burdens coverI’ve been waiting for this 12″ to drop since first seeing clips of Dougie Wardrop in the studio, as it brings together Foundation Sound, Wardrop (Conscious Sounds) and vocalist Dark Angel, each of whom in their own right rate highly in the UK scene.

Foundation Sound, founded by Tony Roots, are Ed Foundation (sound system operator / selector / record label manager), Papa Barn (sound system operator / selector), King Sammy (producer), Tony Roots (singer / percussionist), Jimmy Ranks (singjay / MC), Darien Prophecy (singer), and Guvnor (tech crew), plus nuff extended family, including all the singers on the label, guest selectors, producers and mix engineers.

They are based out of Norwich, and the sound has been running for over twenty years. More recently the record label associated with the sound has begun releasing tunes. (more…)