On Suga Roy & Conrad Crystal’s fourth album they have joined forces with Oneness Records, and The King’s Book might be this acclaimed deejay and singer duo’s strongest set yet. To date they are probably best known for their version of Culture’s legendary Jah Jah See Dem a Come, which became a hit in both Jamaica and the UK.
The King’s Book is mostly a conscious collection produced by Oneness with co-production by Suga Roy, who has produced lots of material during his long career in the music industry, recently on his own Fireball Records. Oneness and Suga Roy & Conrad Crystal first teamed up on Roots Music, a cut on Oneness’ Rub a Dub Man riddim, released in 2012. And that collaboration lead to this full-length, which features solid combinations with Alborosie, Gappy Ranks, Natural Black and Cocoa Tea.
The King’s Book showcases just how powerful and infectious the deejay and singer combination can be. It’s a well-tried and reliable recipe that has rendered lots of classics and hits since the 60s when U Roy chatted over slick Treasure Isle riddims.
This album is however far from slick. The riddims are tight with pounding drums and heavy bass lines. Conrad Crystal’s high and nasal tone works well with Suga Roy’s raw and gruff delivery.
The deejay and singer combination brings The King’s Book versatility. And that versatility together with the well-crafted production provided by Oneness, makes this set a solid modern roots album.