Monday, February 18, 2013

Discography: Tiwony

If we were to compile a list of the ten most naturally gifted and talented Reggae artists of the day, somewhere on that list, and likely in somewhere in its top half, you'd find the name Tiwony. Like several of his more well known peers such as the Sizzlas, Capletons and I-Octanes of the world, the Gwada chanter comes with a style which is just as planted firmly in the Dancehall as it is within the Roots Reggae spectrum and like only THE most talented of them, Tiwony has managed, already, to put together a career which has absolutely dazzled his fans and is winning many more ears along the way. Where he does manage to distinguish himself from the lot, however, is by having a style which is simultaneously and equally BEAUTIFUL and GRIMY. His music can be very much 'rough around the edges', but it almost always appears to be by design, because whether by education or by nature, when he wants to be, he is one of the very few artists around today (and ever) who can make flawless music). At his best, the results are some of the most powerful of the current era. To date, he's made three BIG solo studio albums, which we now have another listen to. Discography: Tiwony

{Note: Intentionally did not include street albums, "Plis Difé", "Mon Itinéraire" and "Difé Lyrical"}
(Note 2: Even though the first and last of them are wicked and worth tracking down}
{Note 3: Actually they're all very good}
The music of Tiwony
"Fly" [High Top - 2007]

'Priyé Jah'

Soaring. Prior to striking out on his own, subsequently extremely successful, solo career. Tiwony was part of a duo alongside FéFé Typical, which would produce a pair of albums, "Double Trouble Express" and "Revolution" (an exceptional album), which helped to add much in the way of anticipation to his forthcoming debut solo set (and I don't think that Typical has had a solo album to date yet), which would eventually become the WICKED "Fly" album. Although on the brief side, with just eleven tracks in all, the album would show Tiwony near the height of his powers and if it was your introduction to him at the time, it showed that you had really been missing something special as the artist hit a level of genuine lyrical perfection more than once on the release. From the title track, to 'Priyé Jah' (probably my favourite song from this album these days), of course 'Longtime', 'Oupatébizwentousa" [BOOM!] and others, "Fly" was something special and one of the better debut album since the turn of the century. Typical, Straïka D, Cali P and others guested.

"Viv La Vi" [Blackwarell Sound Inc. - 2009]

'Pagan's Eyes' w/Ras Zacharri

Full up. If you looked closely at the cover of Tiwony's second album, "Viv La Vi", you see written just under the 'N-Y' portions of the artist's name "and Bredrens", which definitely tells you quite a bit about the album behind the visuals: There was just A LOT going on here. Nearly half of the album's twenty tracks (which combined, in full, for a playing time more than an hour and fifteen minutes) were combinations with the likes of Lyricson, Ras Zacharri, Speedy [twice], ProfA and others stopping by. Besides that, it was just a frenetic type of a project, with even some of the slower sets, such as the title track, the WICKED 'Ka Nou Ka Atan Anko' and its finest tune altogether in my opinion, 'Jah Is My Guide' with ProfA, just being these incredibly involved selections. When the flames started, they gave this stacked album another mighty dimension with songs such as 'Full Up Stamina', 'Mouille Le Maillot', 'Pep La Ni Maw ' [MAD!] setting the course. 'Viv La Vi' has aged very well with its most popular tune likely being the very well promoted 'Pagans Eyes' alongside Zacharri, as well as the title track and a VERY strong case could be made that it was, in fact, Tiwony's finest album to date.

"Cité Soleil" [Blackwarell Sound Inc. - 2011]

'Neva Give Up'

Shine on. Despite being well respected in its time (and even beforehand with all of the nice singles Tiwony dropped prior to its release), "Cité Soleil" would go on to be an album which, at least in my opinion, never really got the respect it was due via its quality. Like its predecessor, it also had quite a few big names tuning in and turning up to join Tiwony as Anthony BGyptian [on the same track]: 

"Di key of life man know a survival
Nah get caught up in a war weh tribal
Nah eat no food if you know it no ital 
Haffi stand up firm inna earth, it vital
Praise Rastafari, no praise no idol
Chant MORE LIFE, cause wi no suicidal
Man a Afrikan, that's why wi live so royal
Stay loyal" 

BOOM! Speedy, Winston McAnuff, the lovely Shalli, Reggae star Konshens and even Vicky Edimo, Tiwony's Father, as well as others, would all shine in this "Cité Soleil". Also casting very large shadows were tunes such as 'L'Union Fait La Force', 'Mon Continent', 'Neva Give Up', with Konshens, 'African Whine' with Da Brains, the title track, a couple of pieces which have grown on me massively in recent times 'Africa Is Calling' & 'Guerrier' and even more here! While I did say that you could make a nice argument that "Viv La Vi" was his best release to date, I wouldn't do that. In my opinion, Tiwony never sounded better than he did on "Cité Soleil", though something tells me that, with his range, something even stronger is one its way, so stay tuned. 

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