(Easy Star Records, 2017)
Sharp and Ready is the debut full-length from Tour De Force member, Dub-Stuy Records co-founder, and John Brown’s Body affiliate Jay Spaker aka Double Tiger.
Expect heavyweight roots in a modern style with a positive mindset, as well as forays into lovers rock and other sub-genres of reggae. No surprise, bass lines are pushed to the forefront while proper stylistic respect is given. Perhaps not a classic, but a strong effort from a legit talent.
“Rocking Time” kicks it off in a rollicking style, ready to nice up most any dance. Double Tiger changes flows throughout, showcasing his singjay range. Then “Creme De La Creme” switches to a more romantic vibe, telling the tale of a cool dancehall excursion. Embracing another type of dance, “Babylon Expire” draws upon the famed Dub-Stuy sound system for a steppers shakedown of the status quo.
From the haunting intro of “Feel Is Nice” to the triumphing horn lines on “Live Life” and the instrumental title track, there’s solid tune after solid tune. The latter of the three is a proper dub slayer, fading out into the mellow croon of “A Feelin’,” which finds Spaker pouring out his heart.
“Take a Lift” sparks a nice shift, shuddering bass and lyrical advice working well together, but within the album’s latter half the relatively brief “Moonlight” is the most intriguing thanks to its sonic palette and mysterious sense of tension. Closer “Ram Dancehall” returns to a party tip, wrapping up a diverse offering of modern dub reggae inna New York fashion.
The Groove Thief
.the future of dub is the present.
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