Reviews

Israel Starr – The Producers Chair – Dancehall Vol. One

Now, I’m going to be honest here, I had no idea what to expect when I first put on Israel Starr’s latest project ‘The Producers Chair – Dancehall Vol. One’. After listening, I think it’s very safe to say this is most definitely not another New Zealand ‘BBQ reggae’ release.  (more…)

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High Smile HiFi 7”s feat. Speng Bond, Koa Aloy & S’Kaya

With three heavy-hitting conscious new 7”s – featuring vocals from Speng Bond, Koa Aloy, and S’Kaya – simultaneously released on their own Top Smile Records, Swiss digital enthusiasts High Smile HiFi have once again crafted some tough riddims which pair nicely with their global cohort of singers.

These releases (#s 12-14) feature bubbling bass lines and stabbing skanks aplenty, all straight out of the mid-1980s in aesthetic and style. (more…)

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The Groove Thief talks to Jstar + Liar, Liar single review

Jstar - Liar LiarFamed [and personal fav] underground mashup/remix extraordinaire Jstar, is on the cusp of a more ‘traditional’ album release with Stand To Order. Featuring respected vocalists Ranking Joe, Soom T, Brother Culture, and Blackout JA amongst others.

Single “Liar Liar” features Danish singer Kinck and is out already. It includes interpretations from Mikal, Capitol 1212, and the Turntable Dubbers, who all explore different expanses of bass music. Jstar was kind enough to answer a few questions about the single, album, and production work. (more…)

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Taiwan MC – Cool & Deadly

Taiwan MC - Cool & DeadlyListening to the whole of Taiwan MC’s debut full-length Cool & Deadly is a musical explosion. Throughout, the skilled French singer, frequent Chinese Man collaborator, and sure confuser of Sinophiles embraces a range of musical styles while generally maintaining a bouncy dancefloor-friendly vibe. (more…)

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Rototom Sunsplash 2016

Rototom Sunsplash 201613 – 20 August 2016 @ Benicàssim, Spain

I’m a little late with this review of Rototom Sunsplash 2016, but it is in good time to get you in the mood for New Zealand summer festivals.

Rototom Sunsplash is an amazing 8-day (9-days including the pre-party) reggae festival which encompasses music like ska, dancehall, dub and African, and includes related culture such as Rastafari, sound system, sustainability and health and well-being.  (more…)

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Reggae Jam

Reggae Jam29 – 31 July, Bersenbrück, Germany

Reggae Jam has been rated the number 1 reggae festival in Europe by Riddim magazine readers, and hearing this I had high expectations. I guess I experienced many highs and a few lows throughout the festival. (more…)

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Dub Camp 2016

Dub Camp7 – 10 July 2016 @ Carquefou, France

Dub Camp 2016 was an incredible experience with 19 sound systems (actual sound systems!), many other DJs, singers, players of instruments, sound conference and Q&A sessions over 3 days and 4 nights. Somehow I have to attempt to condense that into this short review. (more…)

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