Passionate with a rock-twist on Mystikal Revolution’s debut album

disc-3125-mystikal-revolution-divide-and-ruleIf you’ve followed this blog for a while you probably know that I’m not a huge fan of combining rock guitar and rock arrangements with reggae. It’s often – not always – a poor combination that should be avoided.

Luckily enough there are times when it works pretty well. This is the case with Jamaican six piece band Mystikal Revolution’s debut album Divide and Rule. They’re part of the ongoing Jamaican resurgence of live bands that have going on for a while now.

Divide and Rule was exclusively released in Jamaica more than a month ago and it didn’t hit the world market until April 9. It collects 13 tracks with fierce social commentaries and sweet romancing as well as the upbeat sing-along friendly Reggae Skanking, where strained, gruff and passionate lead singer Sanjay Barrett shares vocal duties with slick veteran Bunny Rugs and the always reliable Tarrus Riley.

Other reggae royalty that turns up to pay respect to this talented band are Sizzla and Queen Ifrica.

The set is self-produced and their take on reggae is raw with a straightforward rock twist. The lead guitar is prominent and there are several rock-flavored solos throughout the album, particularly in the title track and the excellent Sizzla combination Gangster Story.

There are also more traditional sounds on Divide and Rule, for example classic Marley reggae in the dramatic Revolution with a melody that sounds custom-made for a Broadway musical.

Mystikal Revolution manages to get away with their homage to guitar heroes like Slash and Yngwie Malmsteen. Their grooves, their passion and their integrity to go their own way can’t be ignored.

1 Comment

Filed under Record reviews

One response to “Passionate with a rock-twist on Mystikal Revolution’s debut album

  1. Pingback: Roots and culture live on with Mystikal Revolution | Reggaemani

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s