The sound system may be new, but the energy within the Indian reggae scene is clearly far from fledgling. Arriving from Hong Kong, I spent the better part of a week attending the inaugural Goa Sunsplash Festival, 16 January 2016, as well as its official pre and post-parties.
Organized by Delhi-based promotion and performance crew Reggae Rajahs – with plenty of assistance from all facets of the national scene – the fest not only represents a coming together of the like-minded, but also symbolizes a firm milestone in the subcontinent’s development of reggae. Making its mark on the festival was the public debut of the 10,000 Lions Sound System, hand-built for the occasion while bearing post-party ambitions for spreading reggae and its related genres across all of India. (more…)
Limited edition 12″ out on Bent Backs Records (2015)
Side A: Roots Woman by Jay “Double Tiger” Spaker
Side B: Work by Ranking Joe
Dub & Loving by Hypa
Exec Produced: Lo Bentback
Artwork: Maël Boutin
Bent Back Records are there pon the case again with another wicked maxi single, with the vibes of mid-80s New York coming on their fresh and on-point label.
Originally a digital-only release, Foundation Sound’s 2014 solid collaboration with Skari has proved sufficiently popular to warrant a limited 7″ pressing.
Full in both sound and message, “One Love” strikes an excellent balance of power between the Shofar Allstars’s crisp-yet-deep horns and Skari’s positive lyrics. (more…)
In just a few short days, The Groove Thief is headed to Bordeaux, France, to represent NiceUp at the 18th annual Reggae Sun Ska Festival. Held August 7, 8, and 9 at the University Campus of Bordeaux, for one weekend reggae will be stealing the limelight from the region’s famed wines! (more…)
Randy Valentine has been a name I’ve been hearing about for a few years now. I must admit I had passed him over a little at first, but did find myself checking riddims to see if it was him killing it on the version.
Jamaican-born Randy now resides in the UK and is gaining popularity at an alarming rate. This could be due to his versatility as a singer as well as a deejay (dancehall MC). (more…)
Opinions about the reissue releases from Blood and Fire, Pressure Sounds, Soul Jazz etc are mixed. Sometimes facts and details are incorrect, sometimes the selections are a bit baffling. One thing they did do, was to force re-issue LPs to up their games presentation wise.
That is the first thing that hits you with this release. This package consists of 3 CDs with 56 tracks, a very nice fold-out CD box with some nice label scans (I do love a label scan!), and a 27-page booklet with interviews and discography. Very impressive. (more…)
Continuing to cultivate both their polished digital sound and their stable of vocalists, Top Smile Records returns for its third collection of 7″ vinyl releases. It seems Switzerland is starting to become a reliable source for digital reggae, as High Smile HiFi continues to focus on quality productions rather than worrying about any hype or (mis)perceptions. These three slabs of wax present just as many riddims, although with four featured vocalists – including the increasingly resurgent Little Harry – only two of the versions are included. (more…)
Classified as digital reggae, Soom T & Monkey Marc’s collaborative Bullets Over Babylon is much more apocalyptic bass manifesto than celebratory ragga dancehall. Soom T nods to plenty yet has a voice all her own; Monkey Marc nods to plenty yet crafts beats all his own. Both partners bring swagger and style to sustain such an ambitious dystopian statement. (more…)
Cubiculo 7″ (2015)
Cubiculo Records returns to its digital roots with a fresh 7″. Featuring South London’s Jah Screechy, back on the case once again, alongside Cubiculo’s own Dub Unit, pairing up with fellow Iberian producer KnD. (more…)
Scotch Bonnet (2015)
As frequent partners on sound systems and in the studio, Mungo’s Hi Fi & Charlie P‘s You See Me Star is a celebratory tour through riddims and across styles. Technically it’s the former featuring the latter, but in reality this album allows the comforts of collaboration to show, with the well-regarded Scottish crew bringing ten varied cuts to showcase the young UK vocalist. (more…)