Title
Artist
Label
Format
Date

Dredlocks Time
Army
382 Music
CD
May 12, 2013

Dredlocks Time - Army Track list
  1. Push De Limit
  2. Jah Will Guide
  3. Can't Pause
  4. Run Run Run
  5. Tripping Over
  6. Blood Deh See
  7. Tru Love Come Down
  8. Slow Down
  9. There Is Life
  10. Stayin On Line
  11. Dredlocks Time
  12. I'll Return
  13. Bid Dem Goodbye
  14. Modern World
  15. In Time
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 5
Roots Reggae coming from The Virgin Islands has been that of reality and beauty for the last few decades. Like a quiet storm, bands like Midnite and Bambu Station have been stirring a spicy Ital stew with every release. Singers like Batch, Abja, Niyorah and Army have put out some truly mighty works. Army's latest, "Dredlocks Time", can only be described as INICREDIBLE; from start to finish.

Born Fitzmaurice Williams in St Croix, Army was inspired by music from early on. He relocated to New York and enlisted in the military for a stint. Coming back to his Roots, he started singing in various bands with veteran Jahole becoming his mentor. The talented youth soon became lead singer for X Factor; an accomplished band that Jahole had put together. The multi-talented Dean Pond (Zion High Productions) signed him and the resulting debut, "Yesterday's News", became an instant classic. An early imprint of the genius of Tuff Lion, Dean Pond and Ronnie Benjamin, Jr (Midnite) and the poetic magic of Army. Subsequent albums showed the maturity of this talent; especially "Rasta Awake" (2005). He is constantly in demand; playing at Reggae On The River (this year!), Monterey Reggae Festival and Sierra Nevada World Music Festival and numerous shows around Creation.

"Dredlocks Time" is Army's most sincere and organic effort of his career. Mixed by Laurent "Tippy" Alfred (ZHP); it features a really tight backing unit of Ras Batch and Ischence (drums), Kenyatta (bass), Walker (guitars), Ischence (keys) and Balboa Becker (horns). You don't need a ten piece unit to get a rich sound! This masterclass opens with Push De Limit. A lush landscape that allows Army to utilize his unique poetic message. The intelligence of his lyrics and the superior arrangements make this an instant rewind. Jah Will Guide is a bubbling firmament that oozes consciousness and demonstrates the range of Army's sincere voice. Can't Pause is serious 21st Century Roots. It's a meditation of sorts that is sprinkled with great horns and drum/bass linkings - itally original. Run Run Run is a culmination of Army's experience with all of Jah's might. He educates us about youth and temptation over a textured riddim that is solidly mixed with perfect guitar and key licks. Tripping Over takes the crown. The riddim offers a mystical platform that this singer uses wisely. You'll find yourself playing this one over and over!!! Blood Deh See offers unique key work that is utterly modern but Army retains ancient order - serious chatting style. Tru Love Come Down is a Dread delivery that keeps momentum thru and thru.

Slow Down is a Dancehall track that echoes work from his debut album. A Lover's tune that really captures atmosphere and draws you in. There Is Life is a futuristic progression that delivers; Army keeps naturality regardless of any riddim - no easy feat. Stayin On Line features a rapid fya approach that is similar to Vaughn Benjamin (Midnite). The slower tempo allows for deep lyrics and a rich and polished mix. The title track is a testament of sorts. Army is a younger statesman of Rastafari and he evokes Jah spirit over a simple and organic riddim with licks in all the right places. The action continues with I'll Return; a horn driven Rocker about not letting life's pressure get you down. Bid Dem Goodbye is an intricate composition that shows the influence of Dennis Brown/Nat King Cole/Freddie McGregor all rolled into a great anthem. The final track, In Time is a soul stirring meditation that deserves repeated listening as every word is intriguing and serves purpose.

Army's "Dredlocks Time" is a prime example of how a talented artist just gets better and better with every release. The level of maturity is obvious to listeners who have followed this humble man's musical journey. He hasn't gotten "swell head" and every song leaves you with inspiration to survive and to observe wisely regardless of the situation. The musician manship and engineering is pure Roots and Branches. Even if you've never heard of Army, you need to add "Dredlocks Time" to your collection. Previous albums are hard to find but seek and you will be rewarded. Highest recommendation. Go deh!!!