Today we take a look back at the collective works of someone who I really wish had more material to cover, yet is an obvious choice for one of these posts. Pressure Busspipe has very much embedded himself into the landscape of modern Reggae music in just about every possible way. The wickedly gifted chanter from out of St. Thomas has not only become one of the brightest lights on the Virgin Islands scene, but in one of the most sensational acts of crossing-over the music has ever seen, he's also managed to help bridge the 'gap' between Jamaican Reggae and a very burgeoning sound from out of the VI. Not only that, but I would be very interested to see just how history records the accomplishments of this artist, fifty and sixty+ years from now, as I can well see him being viewed as a pioneer of sorts and I wouldn't at all be surprised if a generation of young VI artists come up citing Pressure as a grand source of inspiration. But I can't wait fifty or sixty years (literally, I CANNOT), so today we deal with the up to now catalog of one of the most talented artists today. Discography: Pressure Busspipe.
|The music of Pressure Busspipe|
"The Pressure Is On" [Tsuni Records - 2005]
No limits. "The Pressure Is On" is such an interesting album and is so for more reasons than because it was absolutely brilliant in every way. One of its most unique aspects is the fact that despite being relatively difficult to track down (a 'quality' which, unfortunately, becomes more and more the case every year because it has yet to go digital), it seems to grow in popularity as it fades away from public site, which is just odd. Certainly that has much to do with what Pressure Busspipe has gone on to do with his career and hopefully the further and further he pushes he will, essentially, take this album with him, literally and figuratively. As of its music, as I've said in the past, "The Pressure Is On" album may just be the single best debut album I've EVER heard, from anyone. And it well ranks as the finest from the turn of the century (unless I am REALLY overlooking someone). The highlights were as long as the tracklist itself, but the standouts amongst the standouts included tunes like the title track, the increasingly brilliant 'Zion Is Home' (which gets better by the spin virtually), 'When Dem Come' alongside the incomparable Glen Washington, 'Buss Dem Brain', 'No Limitation' and… everything! Dean Pond & Eno Stafford helmed an album which, for as long as people are here to celebrate this WONDERFUL music, will not be forgotten and one which remains Pressure's opus to my opinion.
"Love & Affection" [Don Corleon Records - 2007]
'Love & Affection'
You've got my attention. The tune after which Pressure's sophomore album, "Love & Affection", would be named is a… modern classic of a song. It's one of the finest love songs of the modern era and it would help to lead the artist , himself, into the next stage of his career in which he still resides to this day - a household name in Reggae music and a genuine star. It would also be the centerpiece of one of the most exceptional 'crossover' acts in Reggae music as it saw Pressure Busspipe, this wicked chanter from out of the Virgin Islands, catching the attention of the genius of one of the greatest maestros Jamaica has ever produced, Don Corleon. Specifically in regards to the album - I actually think it was a bit underrated in retrospect. It IS now kind of viewed more as a vehicle for the starring tune which is odd because it had big tunes and big respected tunes as well. These days, I thoroughly enjoy almost every song on this album and its winning moments would have been so on almost any albums. Besides the title track, light shone on pieces such as 'Be Free', 'Most Wanted', 'Boogey Man' ["Bun babylon now, di Rastaman caan wait yah. Too much unemployment, her mi now legislator. Mi nah be your busboy, even yah waiter"], the MASSIVE 'Africa' and several others. This album also, in a big way, shows the prowess of its producer, just as much as the vocalist and Don Corleon's creation are on a full, vibrant and DEVASTATING display throughout.
"Coming Back For You" [Rymshot Productions - 2009]
Back home. Pressure Busspipe's most recent release, "Coming Back For You" (almost four years now Pressure…), was a tiny chunk of home-going for the artist as well. After (actually, while still) enjoying the successes of linking with Don Corleon, this album found Pressure returning to the days of Tsuni Records and Studio 340 and Eno Stafford and ace producer Dean Pond who helmed it (and has since turned his spacious talents on the rest of the Reggae recording and listening world) and, once again, showed himself as someone extremely of drawing the prime performances from Pressure Busspipe, this time from his Rymshot Productions imprint. That was exactly what the very aptly named "Coming Back For You" (fittingly named in so many ways) did. I feel that it was an album CLEARLY aimed at grabbing the same crowd who jumped on at 'Love & Affection' - just hear the title track - and it surely was successful at that as well, and while doing that, it dazzled! 'Pure Life', 'Jah Alone', 'Best In My Life', the MAMMOTH 'I See Rastafari', 'Love Conquer All' and 'Ever-living King' decorated an album which is still rather fresh in memory and hopefully we can add a #4 to this list in 2013.
So, definitely pickup all three albums today. I can't actually not go without recommending a single release as they're all spectacular or nearly spectacular with "The Pressure Is On" being somewhat of a matter of 'mandatory listening' to my opinion these days. The artist is very much an entity in process and while I'd love to see this list larger right now, watching it expand in the coming years should be one of the most single interesting running situations in all of modern Reggae music as we well look forward to more from the ultra-talented Pressure Busspipe.