Norval Headley & John Wayne - "Good Good Lover" (3:40)
Track 4 (3:24)
Review: Firehouse was dub don King Tubby's label right up to his death. Since he was shot and killed in a robbery attempt in 1989, the label has been run by Jamaica's Sonic Sounds. Their latest outing finds them reissue Lilly Melody's tasty two tracker "Jumbo" from 1987. The lead cut is a deep rolling joint with rich patois and rump-wriggling bass. Flip over for Norval Headley & John Wayne's "Good Good Lover" which features plenty of freaky filter use and knob twiddling that skews and twists synths into all sorts of mad shapes while natty chords and zealous bass kills keep you on your toes. Fresh indeed.
Review: Jah reins supreme over the four spiritual dubs that make up this roots package from Joy & Happiness. Sattalite's "Jah Praises" is a call to arms, albeit a gentle one, with impassioned vocals drawing your attention. Ant Henderson's "Sing To Jah Dub" is as echo drenched as dub comes and will leave you feeling lost at sea. Brother Dan gives himself over completely to Jah on "Jah Is My Strength" while things are pared back to a icier dub on closer "Strength Of Jah Dub". All hail the king.
Review: September is a big one for Digital English who have two stone cold killers out on the same day. This one marks a return to the label for Lin Strong, Empress Baby Luv and boss Digital English, as well as a debut for Kniox and Indica Dubs talent Chazbo. There is a brain cleansing crispness to the off-balance chords of "Sufferation" while the sub runs impossibly deep. As ever, Chazbo serves up chest pumping, floor filling warrior synth lines on the excellent "Sounds Of Meditation" and the boss strips it back to a deeper, slower dub to round things up in mesmeric fashion.
Review: Roots, reggae and dub all permeate this silky suite of cuts from Digital English, which look as far back as they gaze into the future for their inspirations. There are digi-vibes on Lin Strong's "Valley Of Elah" before the clean and crisp riddims of Chazbo's "Over The Mountain" are lit up by harmonic chords from the heavens. An echo-drenched dub version then leads into the bumping "Running Away" which implores you to confront your fears, while Kniox's "Chatty Mount" has a meandering lead synth that drifts in the distance. Arguably best of all though, is Digital English's closing cut "Chatty Dub" - a real killer with crisp hits and endless bass ripples.
Review: Jabesh and I David combine to great effect here for a selection of dubs that fuse the old with the new. There are classic guitars and drums on title track "Hold A Meditation" but the broad, smeared synth bass adds some contemporary cool that makes it suitable for a range of different settings. The "Dub" version has lush wet claps and mesmeric filter work before a tooting top line on "Rocktone Melody" gets you in a different state of trance. Closer "Rock To The Dub" sees I David show off his mastery of the studio buttons and rounds out a solid 7".