For a few years around 2010 Dutch production duo Not Easy At All – Marc Baronner and Manu Genius – made a number of ultra-solid albums, singles and compilations, including masterpieces by Chezidek, Earl 16 and Brinsley Forde. Unfortunately the duo went separate ways about three years ago.
Now a few more recordings from Not Easy At All have fortunately surfaced. Benaïssa’s EP African Blood collects four cuts produced by Not Easy At All and two produced by Manu Genius, who today runs his own Dubshelter Recordings.
The set collects versions of some of Not Easy At All’s best riddims and only one has been previously released – the title track, which appeared on the flip to Chezidek’s Walk With Jah 7”.
The powerful, yet insanely sweet, Rock It is probably the strongest cut and is voiced over the One Blood riddim. But tracks like the aforementioned African Blood and Jealous are almost equally strong. The solo additions from Dubshelter is in the same smooth and earthy vein and could have been recorded during the same sessions.
Break-ups happen all the time and since Not Easy At All probably is history it’s nice to have a few “new” recordings from one of contemporary European reggae’s finest production teams.