On the opening re-edit, the driving force is the deep dub-hop bass-line – with appropriate echoes and subtle synths sneaking through – as this pair of verbal assassins ‘large up like sumo, load up the ammo’ in order to best address their inferior competitors. Israel Starr handles the chorus and outer verses, while Gappy Ranks makes the most of his brief appearance, boasting in baritone: ‘we no care who dem are, dem couldn’t go bar fi bar.’ (more…)
Daddy Gadman’s “No Human” 7-inch is all about balancing catchy with serious. On the A-side of this Wrongtom production, the veteran UK MC speaks on some truth, with the chorus “no human should eat out of a garbage can”, cutting straight to the heart.
Examining poverty and wealth inequality from a personal and humanist perspective, Daddy Gadman makes the most of the subtle digital echoes of the Suzy riddim. (more…)
‘Here I Go Again’ is the latest lovers rock riddim from the One Drop Tribe. Produced by Reality Chant Productions, featuring our super talented brothers Israel Starr, Raggadat Cris, Lion Rezz and Jagarizzar. (more…)
A Chilean transplant to New Zealand, Jah Red Lion – flexing irie mic skills in both English and Spanish – makes a timely musical statement on his EP Lion Heart, with bass-heavy productions (and a pair of quality dubs) coming from fellow Kiwis Dub Terminator, High Stakes, and Reality Chant.
Claiming most of the productions, Dub Terminator handles the first few tracks, beginning with the booming hip hop-influenced “Never Leave Me Alone.” Featuring a catchy English chorus and fast-paced verses en Español, Jah Red Lion is clearly confident telling his story in his languages. (more…)
Born in Russia and raised in London, DJ Vadim rose to fame in the mid-90s with his smooth debut ‘Headz Ain’t Ready’ on his own ‘Jazz Fudge’ label. Straight out of the MPC era of hip-hop production, ‘Headz’ had a break-beat/ hip-hop feel which remains as the cornerstone of Vadim’s sound, but his later releases began to feature a fusion of dub, synth, and ethnic influences. His album, ‘USSR: Life From The Other Side’, established him in the American and European market, and his work as DJ for the hip-hop group ‘One Self’ continued to expose him to a wider audience. (more…)
The 7″ debut x2 from Top Smile Records, run by High Smile Hifi, is all about pairing strictly-digital riddims with engaging vocal turns. The clean production is consistent with prior tracks and dubplates from the Swiss trio, whose past collaborations include tunes with Daddy Freddy, General Levy, Ranking Joe, and – for their first (digital-only) release “Another Drive-By Shooting” – Sammy Gold. (more…)
12″ Maxi Single
Early Days Records
Lovers of early digital roots will be well chuffed with the third installment by Early Days Records. This Parisian label run by Mistah P saw its premiere releases last year, with a pair of popular hits packed on a red 12″ by veteran Michael Palmer. This was quickly followed by the second 12″, with lyrical maestro, Trevor Junior’s brilliant ‘Music is Magic’. (more…)
The third compilation LP from this well-known Glaswegian outfit has landed in-stores, and quickly begun to run on sounds all over the UK. And there are plenty of reasons why.
The album opens in true YT style, with a worldly appraisal letting us know we are living in a ‘Serious Time’, over the top of a fresh Mungo’s relick of a classic Studio One riddim. Similarly, Warrior Queen delivers a stellar message on another Studio One reworking, this time Coxsone Dodd’s ‘Run Run’ riddim. Normally found chatting over much darker, bass-heavy tracks, Warrior Queen’s ‘Can’t Stand It’ is one of a handful of standout tunes on this packed LP. It is sure to mash up dancefloors, as I’ve seen it do twice already. (more…)
Beam Up, the German organization whose self-described mission is ‘Dubbing The World,’ has certainly done that on their latest limited-edition 7″ release, “Divers” b/w “Kick Off.” The label’s second release on wax takes inspiration from two classic riddims (Massaneh’s “Permissions” and the Roots Radics’ “Dematerialize”), rebuilding them for the modern era. (more…)
Featuring Bandulu Dub, opener ‘Babylon Your Days Are Numbered’ mixes a skanking synth with tight bass, while the vocals clearly condemn society’s ills. It is quickly evident: Ras Stone sings best with a purpose, while Dub Terminator shines when the low-end leads and a slight haze creeps in amidst the polished dub effects. (more…)