Roots rock reggae on Natty Nation’s Divine Spark

unnamedU.S. reggae band Natty Nation – fronted by vocalist and bass player Jah Boogie – recently dropped their fifth studio album Divine Spark, their first album in eight years. It collects twelve tracks – including two dub versions – mixed by the legendary Errol Brown, who has previously worked with a who’s who in the world of reggae, including Bob Marley and Burning Spear.

The press release states a number of musical influences and interestingly none is a reggae act. Natty Nation rather cites influences like Michael Jackson and Earth Wind & Fire as well as eclectic rock bands like Living Colour, Fishbone and Bad Brains.

But Divine Spark is definitely not a soul or funk album not is it a rock set, even though a cut like Suffice has its fair share of rock guitars. Divine Spark is roots reggae in the early UK tradition, but with a contemporary flair.

Highlights include Prophecy, powered by strong backing vocals, the dreamy Meditation and the soulful title track. The U.S. reggae scene continues to grow and put forward talented acts.

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