On Jamaican chanter Lutan Fyah’s first album in three years he’s right back where he started some 13 years ago. He has again teamed up with Lustre Kings, or at least parts of Lustre Kings, since producer, songwriter and musician Andrew “Moon” Bain is not only part of Lustre Kings, but is also one third of Zion I Kings, the production trio responsible for Music Never Dies.
This album is however his first for Tippy I’s – also one third of Zion I Kings – I Grade Records. And Music Never Dies is excellent from start to finish. Lutan Fyah is at his fiercest and sweetest spitting lyrics and singing sweet on cuts like Beat Dem, So Di World Ah Run and the uplifting title track.
The album is said to have taken four years to complete. And when listening to the album it makes sense. Because Music Never Dies comes with clever and detailed arrangements, infectious melodies and passionate and earnest performances from Lutan Fyah.
Music Never Dies is unfortunately currently only available via iTunes.
World-renowned Swedish reggae star Million Stylez got his big break in 2006 with the massive dancehall hit Miss Fatty. Since then he has toured the world and dropped two albums – From a Far in 2007 and Everyday in 2010. And now he has a third album out on the streets.
Million Stylez has been moving towards roots reggae for several years and Revelation Time is his most cultural and conscious album yet. The album collects only a few dancefloor pleasers and is a reflective set offering more food for thought than his previous releases.
A broad range of producers from around the globe have been involved – including Notis, Dreadsquad and Damalistik – and Million Stylez offers a broad palette of rootsy reggae, ranging from the dreamy The Struggle and the slick Waiting via the bouncy Mr. Williamz combination Can’t Stop the Youths to the tough Bounty Killer collaboration Equal Rights & Justice.
With guest performers like Lutan Fyah, Bounty Killer, Peetah Morgan and Mr. Williamz it’s clear that Million Stylez is a well-respected artist still gaining worldwide attention.
At U.S. based label and production house Zion High Productions they go their own way. That was clear last year when they issued saxophone player Jah Bless’ excellent instrumental album Redemption. Now they have released another daring set.
Nyacoustic Chants probably isn’t the multi-million selling, Grammy award winning and cross-over-tinged set that other labels are looking for. No, this set is something else.
Nyacoustic Chants – produced by Zion High Productions’ own Jah David along with partners from powerhouse roots reggae production team of Zion I Kings – offers 13 percussion-driven tracks greatly inspired by the likes of Count Ossie and Ras Michael.
The rhythms are slow and atmospheric with spiritual depth. Chanters and singers range from reggae luminaries such as The Congos, Earl “Chinna” Smith and Michael “Mykal” Rose to more contemporary artists like Pressure, Jahdan Blakkamoore, Lutan Fyah, Jah9 and Midnite.
The album is bubbling with consciousness and uplifting vibes. It’s the sound of natural mystic. It’s a melodic and pulsating feast, so gather your friends and prepare them for a journey to another musical dimension.
Passionate Jamaican singer Duane Stephenson has spent the past three years touring as lead vocalist with the Original Wailers, but has now returned as a solo artist.
Dangerously Roots – Journey From August Town is his third album following his departure from 7-piece band To Isis, a band where he started his professional career. His debut set was the acclaimed From August Town, which included the magnificent title track. It was followed by the syrupy Black Gold, a set that lacked a bit of edge.
For his new album Duane Stephenson and his label have – just like on his previous albums – enlisted an all-star production team, including Jamaican heavyweights Clive Hunt, Dean Fraser, Christopher Birch, Phillip James and Donovan Germain with guest appearances from Tarrus Riley, I-Octane, Lutan Fyah and Mutabaruka.
The first single off the album was a warm and contemporary remake of Bunny Wailer’s Cool Runnings. And the whole album is just as strong as that particular single.
Dangerously Roots is roots reggae, but not dangerous at all. Rather the opposite. It’s slick, stylish and sophisticated with memorable pop hooks and infectious melodies.
Duane Stephenson singing is heartfelt and he has a sadness in his voice that gives the set a melancholic feel throughout. It certainly adds a sincere flavour to his fight for unity and social change.
So, welcome back Duane. I hope you’ll continue to record as a solo artist.
Austria’s Fireman Crew has for about six years been building riddims and providing backing for a number of reggae artists, mostly from Europe and the Caribbean.
Their latest production is the Four Seasons Selection, an up-tempo riddim in the one drop tradition. The riddim comes with 13 cuts from a number of well-known artists, including Lutan Fyah, Ras Mac Bean and Da’Ville. It also collects strong efforts from lesser known singers, for example Ricardo Clarke, Zagga and Troy Anthony.
The Four Seasons Selection drops as digital download on September 19.
One of last year’s best album releases was Jah Sun’s Rise as One, and one of its many highlights was the up-tempo Richie Spice combination Can’t Live Good, a cut produced by Dynasty Records.
The label has happily enough voiced a bunch of other artists on that tasty riddim, a riddim titled Crunch Time. The one riddim album collects impressive cuts from the likes of Gappy Ranks, Lutan Fyah, Delly Ranx, Bobby Hustle and Sensation & Jus Goodie.
Check Unity Sound’s megamix below and be prepared on September 2 when the riddim drops.
Jamaican chanter Lutan Fyah is one of the most successful contemporary Jamaican artists with over 200 singles and twelve albums under his belt. On his 13th album Get Rid a di Wicked he has teamed up with Grammy Award nominated producer Richard “Breadback” Bramwell.
This 15 track set – 16 if you count the closing interview with Lutan Fyah – has Lutan Fyah spitting lyrics with messages of peace, passion, ambition and inequity on tracks like Tired a di Suffering, This Love, which features veteran deejay Lady G, and Children Safe. He also shows affection for all mothers on the heartfelt My Mother, pays tribute to The Gaylads on Jamaican Girl and borrows from the mighty Herbman Hustling on Ganja Man.
Lutan Fyah is one of the most productive Jamaican artists, not matching the insanely prolific Sizzla, but close. And Get Rid of di Wicked is not one of his strongest albums to date, but it includes enough strong cuts to stand out in a highly competitive genre.
German reggae producer Ras Uwe aka Razoof turned his musical skills toward electronica in the early 2000s and together with Solar Moon he managed to create dancefloor heat around the globe. But now he has found his way back to the reggae scene.
On his latest album Jahliya Sound this drummer and DJ, who has previously worked with German superstar Gentleman, blends reggae, dub and deep house creating a dreamy, atmospheric and relaxed sonic landscape.
The album was recorded in Germany, Gambia and Jamaica and collects 16 tracks, of which four are instrumental versions, and features a diverse set of artists, including Cornel Campbell, Lone Ranger, Luciano, Mykal Rose, Lutan Fyah, Jaqee, Don Abi, Sebastian Sturm, Naptali and Pa Bobo Jobarteh.
Jahliya Sound is a smooth and ambient journey with plenty of laid-back vibes. It’s odd though to hear vintage artists like Cornel Campbell and Lone Ranger interact with the ethereal grooves. But it works, and especially well on Mykal Rose’s Birdsong, Lutan Fyah’s You Say This, Naptali’s Keep the Faith and Cornel Campbell’s Free Up Di People.
Definately an unusal and unconvential album.
Righteous rasta chanter Lutan Fyah’s brand new album Life of a King is a super solid 13 track set produced by Khabir “Khabs” Bonner, probably best known for Beenie Man and Ce’Cile’s recent dancehall crossover hit Thug Love.
Life of a King is a completely different affair though. This is not a dancehall or pop album, it’s a spiritual and powerful contemporary roots reggae journey with clear influences from nyabinghi, hip-hop and old school dancehall.
Lutan Fyah blazes, raves, chants and sings about inequality, unity, peace, love and consequences of the current financial crisis in parts of the world. He is angry as a roaring lion and rebels against the society and the system. And he is very convincing.
Lutan Fyah is a prolific artist who has voiced hundreds of tracks. Loads of excellent tunes, and some more mediocre. Protect the Youth is however one of his best this year, or maybe best in years. It has a driving saxophone, a grim piano and two inspired singers – Lutan Fyah who mixes singing with a fiery delivery and the authorative Mr. Lexx. When he talks you listen. Period.
This is the second Lutan Fyah album this year. And a third is set for release soon. If that set is nearly a strong as Life of a King, 2013 will be Lutan Fyah’s year.
This year seems to boast at least two album releases from the prolific and fierce Jamaican chanter Lutan Fyah. He has the Music Never Dies album coming in June from I Grade Records and a collection of 14 tracks recorded between 2002 and 2006 in the UK with Jah Warrior Records, also set for launch in June.
The latter is however actually already available as exclusive pre-release on Reggae Music Store.
Never Surrender My Faith was mainly recorded and mixed at Conscious Sounds with musicians such as Steve Mosco, Dougie Conscious, Crispy Horns, Digistep, Jonah Dan, Hughie Izachaar and Jerry Lyons.
You get a lot of Lutan here. There are no combinations and back-up singers on this in your face album with its no-nonsense and warrior-like approach. It’s strictly fire and brimstone UK roots with relentless bass lines and pounding drums accompanied by horns, guitar, organ and dub wizardry in the mixing chair.
Never Surrender My Faith presents Lutan Fyah at his best, even though the set would have been even better with a little more variation. It gets a proper digital release in June when it will be available via all major download stores.