April 29, 2013
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 4/5||Backing : 5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 3|
Those favouring live roots riddims are recommended to check out 149 Records' fresh new riddim called "Shango". The French record label entered the reggae market in 2009 with the release of the "Datta" riddim, which was followed by the "See Dem Grow" and "Brighter Day" riddims in 2010, the "Speaker" riddim in 2011, and Anthony Que's album "Meditation Time" in 2012. The captivating "Shango" riddim, built by Michael Forestal and recorded at the 149 Studio, hosts cuts voiced by reputable artists like Anthony Que, Lutan Fyah, Queen Omega and Ras Mac Bean as well as lesser known names like Jah Rain, Charly B, Kush I, and Peter Tosh's son Tosh 1.
Kingston born singer Anthony Que recorded his debut single "Early Morning" circa 1997 for Sugar Minott's Youth Promotion label and was also part of Beres Hammond's Harmony House stable. Since his first recording he has steadily established his name in the reggae arena with single releases and five full length albums including "A Brighter Day Is Coming" (2003), "Recharge And Reload" (2005), "Jamaica No Problem" (2007), "One Day" (2008) and the aforementioned "Meditation Time". With the excellent "Words Of Wisdom" the singer with a hint of Beres Hammond's style in his vocal once again showcases that the Que stands for quality. Lutan Fyah, who hails from the parish of St. Catherine, released his first hit single "Giddeon War" on Buju Banton's Gargamel label. Since then the skilled vocalist has made a powerful contribution to the modern roots reggae movement. His "Boost No War" makes a serious impresssion and fully lives up to expectations.
Trinidad born Queen Omega, in the early stage of her music career hailed as the female roots reggae sensation of the year, shines on "Make A Sacrifice". The latter is a powerful sung tune in which she tells the listener what it means to be an artist. Next drops "Open Your Eyes", a solid conscious effort delivered in real fine style by Guyanese singjay Ras Mac Bean. Initially being into hip hop, Jawara McIntosh aka Tosh 1 has returned to his roots and is now working hard to become a household name in reggae circles. The fiery "Burn Down Rome" gives a good impression of his vocal and lyrical abilities, which turn out to be of a good level. Just like Tosh 1, young ambitious Jamaican singjay Jah Rain has to attract a lot of attention in order to firmly establish his name in the international reggae scene. Here he delivers the herb tune "Smoke It Up", a nice and satisfying effort. Lyrically the reality tune "Money" by French reggae singer/songwriter Charly B keeps you involved throughout, however it's his vocal delivery that might turn you off the end. The last vocal cut, "Not If I Can Help It" comes from Kush I and it's one truly worth hearing.
A lovely saxophone, live instrumentation and superb production make almost every piece a winner.