Prezident Brown might not be the most well-known artist from Jamaica, but he’s definitely one of most interesting ones and his landmark set To Jah Only is one of the best and most spiritual reggae albums ever released.
The Prezident has been in the business since the 80’s and got his name by his resemblance to the gifted deejay and producer U Brown. He worked with legendary sound system owner and producer Jack Ruby – responsible for Burning Spear’s Marcus Garvey and Man in the Hills – up until his death in 1989.
For the past 15 years or so he has released hard-hitting old school reggae grooves, and his latest album I Sound Is From Creation is no exception. It contains 14 tracks – of which several are re-recordings of his 2009 released album Common Prosperity – produced and recorded together with Axx of Jahpostles.
I Sound Is From Creation is the usual blend of Brown’s husky chanting and singing, even though he leans more towards the latter on most tracks, a pity since his powerful flow is more pleasant than his rough singing. It becomes apparent in the soulful Gary Pine combination Rebel With a Cause, where Brown’s swinging chatter follows Pine’s singing.
There are several highlights, and some of the brightest are the uplifting and celebratory album opener Fi We Queen (Jamaica 50), the anti-violence cry Cease Fire over the mighty M16 riddim and the faithful Defender. The dancehall-oriented and head-nodding Ghetto Youths, complete with auto-tuned vocals and screaming keyboards, is also tasty, and offers a fresh addition to the otherwise rootsy grooves.
This solid roots effort is now available on CD and on digital platforms.