reggae posts


Tuesday, July 15th, 2008 by Julija

afro-beat // world // dub

Inspired by traditional African music and hypnotic tribal chants, Quebec natives Doriane Fabreg (Doba) and Carole Facal (Caracol) entwine the ethnic rhythms and modern grooves into a moving sound-journey. As the duo blends a variety of styles with a mixture of French, English and occasional African dialects, DobaCaracol delivers unique and organic arrangements. The standout percussion driven DobaCaracol’s tracks “Étrange” and “Baiser Salé” carry the earthy, warm vibe of afro-beat, dynamic Manu Chao-like nuances and a certain funky, relaxed attitude.

Catchy vocal harmonies and a vibrant quality of sound.
DobaCaracol – Étrange
DobaCaracol – Baiser Salé
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Karolina & Funset

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008 by Julija

reggae // funk

A member of Habanot Nechama, versatile performer and vocalist for Kutiman’s funky tunes, MC Karolina deserves a mention for her colourful mixture of sounds. With the jolly jump-up reggae and funk infusions, fun grooves and playful lyrics, Karolina & Funset form their own conception of catchiness. Improving the mood at any time, getting the audience on their feet , “Lion” is an entirely fun experience.

Brimming with high energy and explosive singing.
Karolina & Funset – Lion
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Habanot Nechama

Thursday, September 13th, 2007 by Julija

israeli acoustic indie reggae

Clapping my hands and swaying from side to side, I enjoy listening to the sunny sounds of Habanot Nechama. Warming and comforting, as Hebrew word nechama indicates to consolation, the trio of experienced Israeli singers combines soothing and joyful tones in their music. The nechama girls’ soulful vocals, minimalist arrangements of acoustic guitars and drums, carrying reggae infusions, and the overall vibe of optimism, deliver more than a lovely reminiscence of fading summer. (Thanks dirkhaim!)

Uplifts the spirit, and makes it summer anytime.
Habanot Nechama – Hakol Kashura (Everything’s Alright)
Habanot Nechama – So Far Lihiot (To Be)
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Sunday, July 22nd, 2007 by Julija

ukrainian acoustic reggae // hip hop

The duo of Ukrainian guys 5’nizza (pronounced pyatnitsa) experiments with layers of vocals and an acoustic guitar like no-one else. Harmonizing the most unexpected, humming, rappin’ and improvising, they bring a smile to your face. Using human voice they create the best quality break-beat rhythms, instrumentation of drums and trumpets. 5’nizza throws together reggae-like sounds, rock influences, bossa nova melodies, random energetic ska, enjoyable hip hop and the greatest fun from Eastern European underground.

Recommended for sunny summer days.
5’nizza – Son
5’nizza – Voda
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Wednesday, February 7th, 2007 by Paul Irish

swedish roots reggae

Swedish roots reggae, you read, with your eyebrow arching high? Oh yes. Of course I gave it the same skepticism that I give Japanese hip hop; how exactly can a culture so far away and even with different climatology bring authenticity and maturity to the genre? And yet this Swedish nonet creates a sound that is both respectful and innovative. You can’t deny ‘Ur Jord’ doesn’t have the catchiness of a Ben Harper or Dispatch tune, while ‘En Timme Kvar Att Leva’ starts you off completely differently−suddenly you feel like you’re in a Yann Tiersen score. (Amelie, perhaps?)

Musical roots meet songwriting ingenuity.
Kultiration – Ur Jord
Kultiration – En Timme Kvar Att Leva
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Val Bennett

Tuesday, January 9th, 2007 by Paul Irish

roots reggae // jazz standard cover

It’s been unseasonably warm in the Northeast and the dry air necessitates humidifiers which then inevitably lead me to mimicking some deep toking. All in all, the perfect ambiance to absorb some new new reggae and dub CDs my roommate Adam just acquired. I heard this tune snaking out of his room just an hour ago. Oddly enough, it’s not from his CDs, but rather playing from the theme of the 80’s series “The Secret Life Of Machines(recommended!). This is basically a roots reggae cover of the Dave Brubek Quartet classic “Take Five”. While Brubek’s name is usually attached to the tune, it’s genius was actually conceived by writer Paul Desmond, who was one of my first posts on Aurgasm.

Take it easy, take it slow, take five.
Val Bennett – The Russians Are Coming
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Fat Freddy’s Drop

Monday, September 18th, 2006 by Paul Irish

kiwi reggae-soul // dub

I can’t say that you Aurgasm readers often tell me what music I should be hearing (lord knows I get an earful from promoters), but one name that’s been thrown my way many times is Fat Freddy’s Drop. And if the popularity of the last multi-reader suggestion, Rodrigo Y Gabriela, is any indication, you’ll likely enjoy these guys as well. Not content with whipping up killer beats, they often lay down soulful R&B vocals to glide effortlessly into your ears. Last year, this seven-piece set picked up all four New Zealand Music Awards they were nominated for, as well as scoring Gilles Peterson’s Album of The Year.

Dubbed out groove from down under.
Fat Freddy’s Drop – This Room

Fat Freddy’s Drop – Wandering Eye

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Monday, July 31st, 2006 by Paul Irish

caribbean soul // folk // reggae

Nuzzle these together for me: the songwriting flavor of Jack Johnson, the character of Amadou & Miriam, and the sound of the islands with the roll of an ocean wave. The Frenchman Jehro (pronounced ZHE-ro) moved to London at 20 and was absorbed by the Jamaican and Spanish influences around his Hammersmith flat. You can expect light and acoustic arrangments alongside Jehro’s chansonnier voice delivering lyrical sensuality. As for me, I expect to see a lot more of this cat.

Island love played cool.
Jehro – Everything (track 9 on the Aurgasm Summer Soundtrack)
Jehro – Long Is The Way
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The Cat Empire

Friday, July 22nd, 2005 by Paul Irish

playful aussie rockhiphopreggaedirtycubanjazz

Now if you’re from Australia, you’re fully aware of this power squad of rockers. But if you’re not, don’t start thinking The Cat Empire is in the same aussie vein as Silverchair and Savage Garden. No no, TCE packs a hell of a punch – killer guitar riffs coupled with a nasty brass section. All the while, they feel like some neighborhood kids having a hell of a time, but you can’t not love the entirely fun grooves they produce. ‘Sly’ jumps loudly off their newest album, Two Shoes, while ‘Hello’ is one of the killer singles from their earlier eponymous release. Dig the organ and swing interlude where it duels against a mean turntable scratch.
Extraordinarily fun and enjoyable stuff. Perfect for the hot summer.

The Cat Empire – Sly
The Cat Empire – Hello
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Tuesday, May 3rd, 2005 by Paul Irish

dancehall // pop reggae

My commute home, like yours, is a time to unwind and forget your day’s stresses. Luckily, Boston’s WERS has a daily reggae program (Rockers) that helps me out huge. Listening for the past week, a couple gems stand out: the drop leaf riddim and this dynamic track “Sunshine Girl” by Capleton. Featuring Bob’s second son, Stephen Marley, “Sunshine Girl” erupts with life; a playful bassline gives way to a gets-in-your-head chorus. Stephen’s innocent voice sings the killer hook and Capleton covers the verses with flawless Jamaican ragga style.
The summertime reggae anthem. Pairs beautifully with sunshine.

Capleton – Sunshine Girl (feat. Stephen Marley)
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