The Archives – Archives

by Jun 13, 2019Artist, Reviews

The Archives - Archives
The Archives (2012)

Release Info

The Archives – Archives

Label:  Trane Trax | Format: DR | Street date: June 8, 2019 | Facebook band


  1. Who’s Correct
  2. Ghetto Gone Uptown
  3. Crime feat. Desi Hyson
  4. Nuff a Dem Claim
  5. One More Time
  6. More To Life
  7. Melodica Funk
  8. Boof Baff feat. Ichelle Cole
  9. Message for the Messenger
  10. Music Is My Prayer feat. Sleepy Wonder
  11. Sensibility
  12. Why Can’t We Live Together
  13. Blasting Through The City
  14. More to Life Dub – I Grade Mix
  15. Pressure Drop Dub – Y & D Duke Production Mix feat. Kenyatta Hill
  16. Sensibility Dub – Subatomic Sound System Mix

Under The Radar

For whatsoever reason an album sometimes stays completely under the radar and most likely would have stayed there for ever if it wasn’t reissued. In this case we’re talking about US reggae band The Archives’ rootsy self-titled debut album, which was released in 2012 on the Eighteenth Street Lounge label.

The Beginning

The story of DC reggae group The Archives began when Eric Hilton of Thievery Corporation started a quest to explore the roots of reggae music. He asked keyboardist Darryl “D-Trane” Burke to put together a cover band that would introduce club goers at DC’s Patty Boom Boom to the rock steady hits and obscurities of the pre-reggae era. It was when the band began writing their own material, that Burke contacted players he knew that could bring a progressive vibe to the music.

The Archives

The line-up of The Archives on this record features vocalists Ras Puma aka Puma Ptah from St. Thomas US Virgin Islands, the charismatic singer on Thievery Corporation’s “Culture Of Fear” album, and Lenny Kurlou (S.T.O.R.M.). Players of instruments are Mateo Monk (Sankofa Blackstar) who plays guitar, flute and melodica; Darryl “D-Trane” Burke (Moja Nya, Eek- A-Mouse, Gregory Isaacs) on keyboards; drummer Leslie “Black Seed” James Jr. (Culture, Eek-A-Mouse) and bass player Justin “Relentless” Parrott (Claudius Linton). Also involved in the project are guest vocalists Sleepy Wonder, Desi Hyson and Ichelle Cole.

Solid Collection

“Archives” is a solid collection throughout with quite a number of tunes that are worth giving it repeated listenings. There’s for example the opener “Who’s Correct”, a groovin’ bubbly piece enhanced with wonderful horn parts that brings a serious message. It’s followed by the mellow vibed “Ghetto Gone Uptown” on which Puma Ptah and Lenny Kurlou alternate lead vocals. Furthermore there’s “Crime”, a song that calls for the legalization of ganja. It’s sung by Desi Hyson, singer and main songwriter of Al Anderson’s Original Wailers. Also don’t overlook the awesome “One More Time”, which fires on all cylinders, and the matching message tune “More To Life”. Sleepy Wonder’s lead singing on the laid-back “Music Is My Prayer” hints to the vocal style of ex-Black Uhuru member Michael Rose. Also of interest is the instrumental piece “Melodica Funk”, which blends melodica, a Latin-flavored jazz flute and organ solos in a real nice and appealing way.

The digital download format of the original 13-track album is expanded with 3 bonus dub tracks.


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