Review: Emotional Rescue presents the music of Haile Maskel in the first in a reissue series working with Patrick Billard aka DJ Duckcomb, sourcing and licensing from this digger's vaults and out to the wider world.
Heralding from the furtive 60's Trenchtown, Jamaica, young Michael Ashley aka Haile Maskel grew up singing, learning guitar and bass. His first recording session was produced by friend Bob Marley, with Peter Tosh on keys, Robbie Shakespeare on bass and Carlton Barrett on drums.
The list of sessions is long, working with Lee Perry, Light Of Saba, Dennis Brown and Sugar Minott. Touring took him overseas where he settled in Los Angeles in 1983, soon launching his Opulence (Sound) label.
Maskel's band, the 101's featured members of The Twinkle Brothers, including cousins Asher and Debo Brown on drum and bass, and augmented by local players. Mixing conscious messages in love songs, Maskel crafts a boogie discodub on which to exalt an uplifting summer jam.
With the highly prized original the tapes unearthed unreleased dubs - "Take 1" providing a wonderful version. LA native Duckcomb found a trove of tapes of unheard material, still for discovery. For now, his longform Discomix, cutting and editing Maskel's vocal along with the dubs, completes a first archival splendor.
Review: The second in the series of DJ Duckcomb affiliated reissues brings the Jamaica / London connection to light, with a reissue of the Brixton based band Red Cloud under the spotlight.
Double Talk was their debut release, coming on House / Freestyle / Reggae label Dancefloor Records, first explored by Emotional Rescue several years ago. After meeting with label head, Jeffrey Collins, in his then London base, the band went on release 2 albums, a 12" and 7" with him, as well as notably being Floyd Lloyd Seivright's backing band.
The original 1983 12"" - now a highly sought after digger's disco reggae bomb - Double Talk is a perfect summer Lovers jam. A tale of sweat talking, cross loving and loss, with redemption and strength, all backed by an uplifting drum and bass, with guitar, keys and piano highlighting the JA climbs instilled in dem sound.
Dubble Dub brings it all down, stripping away and lifting the interplay between keys and piano, allowing guitar to ride above warm bass grooves.
On the flip Duckcomb returns, with his now trademark riding the vocal'n'dub, gently teasing'n'pulling, looping'n'flipping, before letting the echoplex loose to just let the wonderful groove bump'n'grind.