David Cairol – Vers(e)
CD / LP / DR
April 14, 2023
01. Hope Road
02. Building Bridges feat. Brinsley Forde & Var Hillsman
03. Morphed Faces feat. Rik Jam
04. Echoes From The Jungle feat. Judy Mowatt
05. Banan Banan
06. Grow In
07. Last Bus
08. Running Out
10. Turn Up The Stereo
In the inception of their careers, numerous reggae singers adopted a vocal style that was evidently influenced by established artists. For instance, the early works of Luciano and Frankie Paul echoed the style of Dennis Brown. Ras Shiloh had a similar vocal tenor to Garnet Silk, Bushman to Michael Buckley, and Lion Youth’s voice bore similarities to Gregory Isaacs’. Additionally, David Cairol, a vocalist from the French Basque Country, possesses a striking vocal resemblance to the iconic Jamaican artist, Bob Marley.
After having released two studio albums – Initiales (2013) and U.N.I. (2017) – David Cairol began working on a new project upon his return from Jamaica where he had taken a break from touring. His stay at the island was a chance for him to reconnect with the beginnings of his love for music, particularly the natural riddim of reggae which had always resonated deeply with him. Filled with inspiration, David embarked on a creative journey to pen and compose songs, ultimately deciding to record his new album in Kingston with some of the music industry’s most accomplished musicians, vocalists, and producers. On board came producers Matthieu Bost (of Bost & Bim Fame), Stephen Stewart, and the late Sam Clayton Jr alongside guest vocalists Judy Mowatt, Brinsley Forde, Var Hillsman, and up-and-coming Rik Jam. Musicians who joined in included Sly Dunbar, Earl “Chinna” Smith, Bongo Herman, the late Winston “Bo-Pee” Bowen, and Danny “Axeman” Thompson, the late Dalton Browne, Winta James (producer of the Protoje albums and keyboards for Damian Marley), Courtney Bam Diedrick (Damian Marley drummer), Donald “Danny Bassie” Dennis (Protoje bassist), Hector Lewis (Chronixx backing vocalist and percussionist) and Paris Lamont (keyboards for Protoje).
David Cairol’s third complete studio album, named Vers(e), comprises eleven tracks, with three of them being collaborations. The first one, the previously released Building Bridges, brings David Cairol together with Brinsley Forde & Var Hillsman. Together they create an exceptional rootsy tune, which undoubtedly stands out as a remarkable feature of the album. With a riddim that’s more contemporary than rooted in tradition, the uplifting piece Heartcore done with Rik Jam proves that combining the voices of these two artists is a successful and harmonious affair. The Nyahbinghi-infused Echoes From The Jungle, featuring the lovely Judy Mowatt, is truly remarkable. It’s a genuine masterpiece that reveals its full power with each subsequent listening. When checking his solo endeavors, one certainly shouldn’t ignore the album opener Hope Road, which is the singer’s moving personal account of his musical journey. Neither overlook the beautiful Grow In and the solid pieces Music and Morphed Faces with its sweet female backing vocals.
If David Cairol is unfamiliar to you, we suggest giving this album a listen to become acquainted with his work.