Saturday, January 21, 2012

What I'm Listening To: January

Errol Bellot

{Note: Got Sick}
{Note 2: Bad!}
{Note 3: We'll get to the messages . . . eventually}

"Know Jah" by Errol Bellot [Reality Shock Records - 2011]

First up this week is a somewhat surprising piece for a couple of reasons. While the name Errol Bellot isn't one which is completely foreign to me, he also isn't exactly a 'household' name for me either - well at least he wasn't. These days I'm not too sure, however, as the UK veteran has well made his way onto my players recently via the release of (I THINK) his SPLENDID debut album release, "Know Jah". Also surprising is the source of the album - Reality Shock Records - hasn't exactly been a favourite of mine over the years either, but I give credit where credit is due because they mine GOLD with this project. If you're looking for a little old school vibes with just a bit of new school BITE, definitely check out "Know Jah", an all-around solid Roots Reggae release from the nearly perfect voiced (for the type of music that he sings) Errol Bellot.

CD + Digital

"Feel Your Presence" by NiyoRah [I Grade Records - 2010]

"No Guts, No Glory" ["I'm a Rasta, not an OG"]

Before talking myself out of it (via a most convenient spell of absolute laziness), I had "Feel Your Presence", the most recent release from the always outstanding NiyoRah, framed up for a 'Modern Classic' review (much like its predecessor "Purification Session") and while I will most likely get around to that someday - these days I'm just taking a listen back and I'm still enjoying what I'm hearing, mightily. Today I'm focusing on three songs in particular -- the opener, 'No Guts, No Glory', which would get a video and become a big single, of course there's the SCATHING 'Bruk Down Barrier' alongside Jah Mason (with the mad verse from Niyo) and a later tune which just recently started doing damage for me, 'From Since When' with the Femi Kuti stylings.

CD + Digital

"Modern Rockers Vol. 1" by Joggo [Dredda Records - 2011]

I absolutely love 'Album of The Year' time! One of the main reasons is because it gives me an opportunity to go back and THOROUGHLY listen a few albums from months and months ago and of the ones which recently jumped back on my players because of that list, definitely it's been "Modern Rockers Vol. 1", the HUGE debut album from Surinamese chanter, Joggo, which has had the most impact. The album was absolutely sterling and, looking back, in terms of what it was, it was rather easily the most overlooked album of 2011 (even more so than "Cité Soleil"). That's a damn shame because had it had even a few more tracks, it may've been without equal last year.

CD + Digital

"A Mon Image" by Lindsey Lin's [Shark Entertainment - 2008]

"Les Beaux Jours"

A direct credit can be given to Njie, whose recent album, "Destination Soleil", has played a large part in turning my ears back to Zouk (biggup Ms. Mahy) and just in time with some big things reportedly on the horizon. One of my absolute favourite Zouk singers is, of course, Lindsey Lin's and I've been well enjoying the trip back through her sophomore release, "A Mon Image". The album just happens to contain one of the greatest Zouk tunes I've ever heard in my life, 'Les Beaux Jours' as well as a handful of other standouts. Anytime now with the new album, Lindsey!

CD + Digital

"The Ultimate Soca Gold Collection" [VP Records - 2011]

And finally is this wonderful compilation which has turned out to be extremely useful, "The Ultimate Soca Gold Collection". Every tune here in which I have interest I already have through other sources, but it's pretty convenient to have them all loaded on the same block. A piece full of some of the biggest tunes (I think my favourite song on the entire thing is 'Display' by Mrs. Lyons-Alvarez) from some of the biggest names in Soca which just goes to remind - It's almost time!

CD + Digital

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