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Sly & Robbie

Sly & Robbie — Dubrising (December 2, 2014)

Jamaica                Sly & Robbie — DubrisingSly & Robbie — Dubrising NOMINATED ALBUM: TAIS AWARDS
ΞΞ   Album, které vyšlo pouze na sběratelské vinylové úrovni, je zřejmě nejlepší dub reggae album roku 2014 a mým tipem na nejlepší reggae album 2014.
ΞΞ   Je to testament — doklad původního zvuku a atmosféry, kterou duo originálně vytvořilo již v nejisté, ale transformační post–Marley éře začátku roku 1980.
ΞΞ   Session musicians and dub masters who evolved into the background and backbeat of reggae music from 1980s onward.
Formed: 1978
Location: Kingston, Jamaica
Album release: December 2, 2014
Recorded: Channel One Studios on Maxfield Avenue, West Kingston, 1980
Record Label: Tabou1 Records
Duration:     35:48
1 Satan Fall     5:27
2 Freedom Ring     4:07
3 Drone Snipers     3:46
4 Bully Tactics     4:20
5 To the Rescue     4:39
6 No Surrender     4:45
7 Flame Thrower     4:48
8 Double Agent     3:56
ΞΞ   Engineer/Mix: Paul "Groucho" Smykle
•  Oct 30, 2014
Review overview:
Voice: ****½ 
Lyrics: ***** 
Music: ***** 
Originality: ****½
Delivery/Presentation: ***** 
Summary: 4.8
ΞΞ   On December 5, 2014, Tabou1 Records will release Sly and Robbie’s Dubrising LP, which reunites the riddim killers with dub maestro extraordinaire Paul “Groucho” Smykle for the first time in more than twenty years. The album, which will be released only on collector’s grade vinyl, is the finest dub reggae album of 2014 and my pick for best reggae album of the year.
ΞΞ   Anyone unfamiliar with the work of former Island Records in–house mixing engineer Paul “Groucho” Smykle need only drop the needle on any one of several landmark dub reggae recordings he mixed in the 1980s and 1990s.  Have a listen to the afro–militant thump of “Kunte Kinte” (the version to Creole’s “Beware of Your Enemies”); Black Uhuru‘s “The Monkey Is A Spy” (“Sinsemilla”), “Fire & Brimstone” (“Journey”) and The Viceroys’ “Dub of Gold” (“Heart of Stone”), all from the 1981 concept dub venture Raiders of the Lost Dub.  Check his formidable skills as mixologist on “Ion Storm” and “Android Rebellion” from Black Uhuru’s The Dub Factor.  Smykle is the chupacabra of the mixing board, a semi–mythical maestro mixologist of dub who quickly made a name for himself in the post–Marley era with the best rhythm section to emerge from “the Rock” since the brothers Barrett.
ΞΞ   Smykle is back in the mix with Sly and Robbie, this time mixing a set of largely unknown recordings by the likes of Bunny Rugs (“Rumours”), Horace Andy (“Zion Gate,” “Rastafari Prophecy,” “King of Kings”), Khalifa (“Accused”) and Chezidek (“Devil You Can’t Bully Me Out”, “Surrender”).  The instrumentals were recorded live at Harry J’s and Anchor studios in Kingston, Jamaica.  Don Donovan (Big Audio Dynamite) was brought in by Smykle to lay down synthesizer overdubs and Bunny McKenzie to add harmonica.  The overdubs bring a cohesion to the mix that can be heard throughout the entire album.              © ΞΞ   June 10, 2009 at The Barrymore — photos by Ankur Malhotra 
ΞΞ   Dubrising is a whimsical Taxi ride back to Channel One Studios on Maxfield Avenue, West Kingston, 1980 where Sly and Robbie lay down riddims during sessions for Black Uhuru’s Showcase album.  On to 1981 when we first hear the “new sound of reggae” — the driving drums and thumping bass behind tunes like “Sponji Reggae” and “Puff She Puff” and 1982 when the voice of Uhuru pleads “Chill out, chill out, chill out New York.”  The only thing heavier than the heat on the street is the haze that fills the air from that “stalk of Sinsemilla growing in my back yard.”
ΞΞ   Yes, I tell you bredren and sistren, it is all here again in 2014 on tracks like “Drone Snipers,” “Bully Tactics,” “Flamethrower,” and “Double Agent,” titles eerily reminiscent of the apocalyptic dub mixes from The Dub Factor.  Smykle takes on the modern roots of Chezidek with a vengeance on “Bully Tactics” and “No Surrender,” two of the strongest tracks on the album.  He stamps the end of the album by paying homage to the great Bunny Rugs of Third World who passed back in February.  The brilliant and bittersweet “Double Agent” is the dub mix of the previously unreleased “Rumours,” the Carlton “Tetrack” Hines–penned mega–hit for Gregory Isaacs that Rugs voiced shortly before his passing.
ΞΞ   Sly and Robbie’s Dubrising is not only the best reggae album of 2014, it is a testament to the sound and vibe that the duo created in the uncertain yet transformative post–Marley era of the early 1980s.  It is an album which will lock the jaws of dub–mixologists everywhere as they ponder their future in a world inhabited once again by Sly Dunbar, Robbie Shakespeare and Paul “Groucho” Smykle.
•  http://fdrmx.com/
Review by David Jeffries  •  Score: ****
ΞΞ   Featuring basic tracks cut for Horace Andy, Chezidek, Bunny Rugs, and Khalifa between the years 2006 and 2012, Sly & Robbie's 2014 effort Dubrising was later touched by the hands of keyboardist Dan Donovan from Big Audio Dynamite, but more importantly, these riddims were later dubbed by engineer and producer Paul "Groucho" Smykle for the first Sly, Robbie, and Groucho tracks in nearly 30 years. It's a relationship that goes back to the heyday of Black Uhuru and the great U.K. post–punk and reggae mash–ups, but no one here is hung up on being monumental, as Dubrising plays out cool and tasteful, like old friends who pick right up where they left off decades ago. Sly & Robbie's naturally grooving melodies get a bit of Donovan's space age and/or spaghetti western keyboard work, while Smykle is here to treat it all with proper echo, punch, and edits. Check the cool "Freedom Ring" for every ingredient in just the right measure, or "No Surrender" for a bumpier ride where all three parties get their turn. The closing "Double Agent" takes the brokenhearted reggae classic "Rumors" and dubs it into some masterful spy movie music with a Jamaican spin, while the mysterious and sharp "Drone Snipers" is everything its evocative title implies. Sly & Robbie's discography is huge, and since 2012, they've been adding nothing but excellence to the pile, but Dubrising deserves special attention from the dubheads, '80s heads, and the Uhuru faithful. All those spirits are rekindled here, and there's some wicked robot cover art on top of it all, just to make the set's worth undeniable. :: http://www.allmusic.com/
By Erik Magni on Friday, December 12, 2014
ΞΞ   Carefully curated chaos on Sly & Robbie’s Dubrising.
ΞΞ   On Sly & Robbie’s third dub album this year they have teamed up with veteran mixing engineer Paul “Groucho” Smykle, who mixed a few classics back in the 80s, including ; Ini Kamoze’s ground–breaking debut and Black Uhuru’s forward–thinking The Dub Factor.
ΞΞ   Sly & Robbie are two of the main proponents of dub and have played on countless of dub albums and also produced and mixed more than a few. And Dubrising throws you right back when to a time when the duo started to make a name for themselves — the early 80s.
ΞΞ   Dubrising is heavy as lead, yet melodic and refined. Paul Smykle uses quite a lot of vocals in the mix, so the original eight tracks from the likes of Bunny Rugs, Horace Andy and Chezidek can be recognized.
ΞΞ   This album is not as sparse as two of Sly & Robbie’s more recent dub efforts — Blackwood Duband Underwater Dub. It’s actually far from sparse. There are loads of instruments to play with for a mixing engineer. Apart from the usual bass, drums, guitar and keys, they have thrown in harmonica, strings and flute. Sounds like a real challenge for a mixing engineer.
ΞΞ   The mixing is playful and Paul Smykle has created something of a meticulously coordinated chaos. Vocals coming in from the right, synths from the left, percussion from below and flute from above. It’s a joy to listen to and you are keen to know what will happen next.
ΞΞ   Among the many highlights are the militant To the Rescue with its galloping drums, wobbling bass and odd sound effects and Freedom Ring with its haunting synths, hypnotic drums and ground–shaking bass.
ΞΞ   Sly & Robbie have been in the music business for about 40 years, but they still manage to stay innovative and original. Fortaken: http://unitedreggae.com/
Interview: Sly Dunbar (Part 1 — Memories)
By Angus Taylor on Thursday, May 24, 2012 — Photos by Wonder Knack
•   http://unitedreggae.com/articles/n1000/052412/interview-sly-dunbar-part-1-memories
Interview: Robbie Shakespeare
By Angus Taylor on Tuesday, June 26, 2012 — Photos by Wonder Knack
•   http://unitedreggae.com/articles/n1024/062612/interview-robbie-shakespeare#sthash.LXvANYNr.dpuf
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/slyandrobbieofficial
Sly and Robbie with Heayweight Dub Champion
ΞΞ   June 10, 2009 at The Barrymore — photos by Ankur Malhotra
ΞΞ   My first time catching the legendary drums and bass duo of Sly & Robbie and what a great show! Starting off with Heavyweight Dub Champion — the trio comprising of members Ressurector, Patch and Totter Todd got the groove going with their heavy dub connection. As Sly and Robbie came on stage, the bodies started packing up close and dancing to the super–tight bass lines, the incessant and always–on–mark drumming, and a superb backing band covering vocals, horns, keys and more. A pity the show was on a Wednesday work–week night and the house was half full, because the sound and musicmanship was spectacular. Do not miss them the next time they are in the vicinity. Sly and Robbie have been producing music together for more than 30 years, and have instrumental in shaping the sound of reggae and world music. They have provided the rhythm section for notables like Black Uhuru to Peter Tosh, to Gregory Isaacs, Dennis Brown, Bob Dylan, Santana, Tricky, Ben Harper, Michael Franti, and many, many more... rejoice in the riddim! •   http://madisonmusicreview.com/

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