French quartet Stand High Patrol – led and fronted by vocalist Pupajim – has released their third album The Shift. And on this album they have refined their jazz-oriented sound.
Unique is a well-worn word, but is probably most accurate when describing Stand High Patrol’s sonic identity. It’s a new type of urban groove where they break musical boundaries and create a highly individual sound where reggae singjaying meets 60s jazz and 90s hip-hop. Boom bap reggae rap so to say.
It’s an intelligent and infectious fusion. Highly organic and very dynamic with big beats. And key to Stand Patrol’s sound is trumpet maestro Merry. He graces the cuts with lonesome and distant horn lines.
Stand High Patrol’s sound and Pupajim’s broken English might not be for everyone and The Shift is far from the reggae mainstream. But if you’re in the mood for jazz with a hip-hop and reggae twist, well, then this is the album for you.
French trio Stand High Patrol’s second album A Matter of Scale offers something new and exciting to the otherwise often traditional digital reggae scene.
This is a brave album and it offers mostly extremely sparse arrangements and several of the cuts lie close to digital jazz with a reggae and dub twist. Even though Stand High Patrol also manage to showcase they’re still at ease with producing hard and triumphant steppers, as shown on Warehouse, The Bridge and The Tunnel; three spine-chilling tunes I would run away from if I met them on the street.
It’s a 13 track set and a mix of vocal cuts and dubstumentals. Pupajim does most of the singing and his nasal pitch might be something of an acquired taste.
Stripped-down tunes like album opener Tempest, with its desolate trumpet, Geography, with an infectious piano line, the slow Sleep On It and the cinematic Blue Wax could all work well at a smoky jazz club in Paris, while Gambling Johnny and Routine are more conventional 80s sounding digital reggae aimed at the sound system circuit.
A Matter of Scale offers something fresh, while it’s still rooted in the 80s digital reggae scene.
Ten years have passed since German label Jahtari opened their doors and to celebrate this disrupt and Rooth have cooked up a highly addictive – yet eerie – fourth instalment in the Jahtarian Dubbers series.
Delay and reverb experts from five continents have come together for this 12 track set that blends psychedelic dubstrumentals with swinging vocals by the likes of Jah Screechy, El Fata, Pupajim and Cho Cho, who sounds a bit like France’s Marina P or UK’s Hollie Cook.
Unique is a tired expression, but I’d still like to use it when describing the sounds coming from the Jahtari camp. This is certainly digital reggae rooted in the 80s, but it sounds like nothing else. It’s like Kraftwerk has teamed up with King Jammy recording an album using a Commodore 64 in an abandoned warehouse outside Berlin.
Disrupt’s Chrono Trigger is similar to ska, but at the same time it has a completely different vibe. It’s a reggae-flavoured soundtrack to an 80s video game complete with an abyss deep bass line. And Pupajim’s Nobody Can Stop We (Dub At The Pub Dubplate) sounds like an Atari-version of the mighty Cuss Cuss riddim.
This album is something else, so if you are curious about the different side reggae you need to check it, but – as stated in the press release – be aware, the set might have your Walkman batteries run empty in no time.