|"Ride Tru" by Midnite [I Grade Records]|
1. 'Calm The Day'
2. 'To Them'
3. 'To Ge Da'
6. 'Conquering Lion'
7. 'Voices of The Remnancy'
8. 'Haile Selassie I The First Time'
9. 'Arise Again'
10. 'I Beseech Jah' featuring Pressure
11. 'Worry Free'
12. 'How I & I Carry On'
13. 'Ride Tru'
So, while we were just talking about them -- both of them -- yesterday as they came together earlier this year for the sterling "Beauty For Ashes" set, apparently ONE time this year simply is not enough and, again, Midnite and I Grade Records with the Zion I Kings come together for what should be another giant offering, "Ride Tru" which is reportedly set to reach early next month. Though I was definitely surprised to see a second Midnite/I Grade Records release, I probably should not have been as with only two official albums to 'their' credit between the aforementioned "Beauty For Ashes" and August's "Stand The Test" from Iaahden Sounds (and, technically, there was also the dubbed out version of "Better World Rasta", though that hasn't come as a full release just yet), it hasn't been the typically [over] active year for Vaughn Benjamin and company. On top of that, the prospects of a virtually immediate follow-up to "Beauty For Ashes" (an album with corners and crevices which I'll probably spend years exploring) (and one which I believe was quite popular) is downright appetizing to say the least.
And I've been fortunate to have a healthy listen to "Ride Tru" today (biggup I Grade Records) and I already have some impressions. Of course I have to save most of them but I will say just a little… because you know I can't help myself. First of all, I think that when compared to its predecessor, "Ride Tru" is a 'darker’ album. It does feature its more 'effervescent' moments (I always wanted to use that word) but "Ride Tru" appears to be more straightforward wizardry from Vaughn Benjamin. There is a song here, 'Credited', which I believe is the album's first single (something AMAZING is going on with the riddim of that piece) and that is emblematic of the sound of many of the songs on the album in my opinion. 'Credited', which is gorgeous is amongst my early favourites from "Ride Tru" and it is joined by the opener, 'Calm The Day' ["A cacophony of a barrage of words of a side-track of a deviate"], 'Conquering Lion' [TEARS!], the seven minutes + title track, 'I Beseech Jah' which, once again, unites Midnite and Pressure Busspipe and 'Haile Selassie I The First Time' as well. The album's biggest two selections (again, from a very early listen and I'll likely change my mind before I finish writing this) (… and then be far, FAR too lazy to go back and change it) are the magical 'To Them' and 'Voices of The Remnancy'. The former is an all kinds of DAMAGING [BOOM!] tribute to His Majesty which has this EASY sound to it which is almost overwhelming at times but in a most subtle way.
"The Lamb that return yah with a Lion head
ONLY THIS TIME UPON A THRONE SEATED
Humble and perfected inna righteousness
All di like-minded know they needed strength
When goals line up along allegiances
That's when realizations overtake them when -
Di magnitude and scope of what they stand against
Turned into entire, whole world events"
TEARS! CRYING RIGHT NOW! NOTHING I CAN DO ABOUT IT! NOTHING! 'Voices of The Remnancy', which also has a fantastic track behind it, is a tribute of another kind as Benjamin honours some of Reggae music's champions who have transitioned, including Buggy Rugs ["TEN THOUSAND SOLDIERS, NINETY-SIX DEGREES"] and Bob Marley ["Rastas right now ah celebrating right close with Marley. THERE IS NO CLOSER PROXIMITY TO ETERNITY"]. And I could go on and on and you know I want to!
But we'll save judgment until a full listen and You too simply have to check out the second Midnite/I Grade Records album of the year when "Ride Tru" reaches stores in December.