Review: Although the titular track might have been somewhat spoiled by a certain TV advert, the rest of Gregory Isaacs' most well known album still stands up. Lazy reggae rhythms are permeated by sparkly synth work from Wally Badarou, which at the time was a brave and progressive move away from traditional reggae and toward the ensuing sound of dancehall. Isaac's own buttery, laid back musings are front and centre, crystal clear and delicate throughout, always complimented by dainty piano chords that sink you deep into a dreamworld. The production throughout is first class, too, making this a true classic.
We Are The Band Of Enlightenment, Reason & Love (instrumental) (4:08)
Review: A few years ago, West African music obsessive and Philophon label boss Max Weissenfeldt decided to make some roots reggae with his friend and fellow drummer Josie Coppola. Yet this would be no regular reggae, as they'd be working on songs by Ghanaian artist Y-Bayani (real name Yusef Hussain). Since then, the project has developed further with the addition of a second lead singer, Baby Naa (Naomi Addy), a clutch of talented musicians and a Ghanaian choir. The result is this debut album, a wonderfully hazy, sun-kissed shuffle that does a brilliant job in putting a new, Afro-centric spin on Jamaican roots reggae. The riddims are strong, the multi-lingual vocals superb, the musicianship spot on and the production authentically warm and weighty. In other words, it's an unlikely gem.
Review: It was in churches in the late sixties that Pablo Moses first started performing and a decade later he was putting out his own releases and making an immediate impact on the dub world. "Pave The Way" was his third full length album and was produced, recorded then mixed by the hands of the revered Geoffrey Chung of Jamaican Dynamic Sounds. Our picks of the bunch include album highlight "Africa Is For Me", the shuffling "A Step Before Hell" and superbly hazy "I See It Everyday".
Review: Back in 1995, Lee "Scratch" Perry swung by Mad Professor's Ariwa Sounds studio in South East London to add his vocals to a fresh batch of raw, sub-heavy jungle riddims by Dougie Digital and Juggler. The results were released, alongside a quartet of more traditional dub versions built by Mad Professor using the same vocals, on an album called "Super Ape Inna Jungle". As this reissue proves, it was a potent set. Mad Professor's dubs are of course as weighty, echo-laden and inspired as ever, but it's the quality of the crunchy, razor-sharp jungle cuts that most impresses. These may not be considered jungle classics, but in our eyes, they should be considered as such.
Review: Tapper Zukie is a legendary deejay and producer who ran his own label Stars and was a regular on the likes of Virgin. "X Is Wrong" offers up plenty of digital only material that has never been on vinyl before and is an essential addition to your shelves as a result. It finds the Jamaican icon laying down some fresh rhythms while exploring notions of love, the bible, jah, rastafarianism and much more. The beats roll hard, with plenty of contemporary studio effects and instrumental lines embellishing each one with an original edge.