SHOK WAVE is your weekly new REGGAE music blog. SHOK WAVE finds music that is out there in the form of Reggae, Dancehall, Soca, Ska, Dub, Reggae Rock & anything else musical with a Caribbean origin and in any language.
Here is what we found this week.......Enjoy!
Estelle 'Lover's Rock'
Grammy winner Estelle is no stranger to reggae. So to have someone of her caliber & recognition do a full concept album of 'Lover's Rock' is HUGE!!!! The album also has dancehall, afrobeats, hip hop, R & B, & soca. There's also a style of dancehall I hear on here quite a bit, that is more like Drake than the bonafied style of Jamaica. All in all it's apart of her upbringing and still one of her favorite musical styles to listen & sing. She released two singles: first 'Love Like Ours' with Tarrus Riley & more recently 'Better.' The first is definitely a standout. Other guests include an all star cast: Luke James, Maleek Berry, Konshens & Nick & Navi, Kranium, Chronixx, Alicai Harley & HoodCelebrity. A few points: the album is a reggae album, just doesn't feel like one. I must admit I had expectations. Songs of reggae that would crossover & get reggae mainstream radio airplay and several big tunes. I do not feel it has either of these. The album is good, solid and shes super talented, so maybe my expectations are too high. A disappoint was the subtle bad words in 3 songs. My standouts are the first single, 'Slow Down' feat Alicai Harley with a dancehall/pop vibe and the album is still 'Good For Us.'
George Nooks "For You"
Regardless of what people may say,what they may think or even what George Nooks may do, he's currently one of the best voices in Jamaica, he's 'Someone Special.' Nooks' latest album "For You" is a great reflection of that talent & it's his first lover's rock album in 15 years. In fact, you should 'Give My Love A Try,' it's a 'Chance Of A Lifetime.' If you love Dennis Brown like George Nooks, than you will 'Love Light.' Use that 'Light' & 'Love' all so you 'Don't Burn Your Bridges' because you may need them on one of those 'Sunny Days.' You know when you're in love you can't get that person 'Out Of My Mind.' The songwriting is good and so is the production especially on 'Rain Drops Under.' It is a great album "For You."
Basement Roots 'Experience'
'My people shine for your culture, my people rise for you future' is the opening line to their opening song on their opening album. It's Basement Roots on their debut album 'Experience' and it's their thesis for the whole album. It's a universal theme that penetrates & goes deeper than the surface. It's "One Culture" from a band from Switzerland that has a great sound and great songs with great messages. The dominant sound is roots reggae with great horns and a variety of voices. Introduced two weeks ago here with their first single "Catch The Flow.' The female voice of is a wake up call on "StoryLine," the song says 'Life ain't no movie, life ain't no game.' It's the only song that gets a dub too. "Working" is your second alarm clock in the morning when all you do is wake up to go to work. 'Self Reflection is required' in "Lesson Number One." The "Experience" album concludes with it's closing statements & beautifully wraps up this "Peaceful Revolution" with it's 'roots rock reggae sound!!!!!!'
Black Roots 'Take It'
Good modern roots that has real messages on Black Roots newest album 'Take It.' The album is solid. The standout points are the multiple singers and I love the horns. The other tough part has been trying to find a song that's a standout. 'Take It,' 'Common Man,' 'What A Crisis,' 'Children Of The World' and 'Digital' all could be that song. So let me know which one you think is the best.
DJ Vadim "DubCatcher 3"
A various artist album with various styles of reggae music and possibly creating new ones as this album is pushing the boundaries on several tracks. There's a wide range of artists and topics too. The songs that catch me are the more traditional like Earl 16's 'Manipulator,' 'Corrupted by Big Red, Sr Wilson & J Man, which has a little French Latin flavor & probably my favorite, 'Rudeboy' has Lion D, Raphael & Syross and lastly there's 'Ta Tell You from Ras Demo, whos is the only one with 2 tracks.
"Ital Foundation Vol 1"
This rare record has been re-released through Jamwax & Musical Impact for the first time since it's original pressing.
This is also Bermuda's best reggae band....ever. This is their only release and it is from reggae's golden era as it was recorded in 1979. It is not for the weak hearted, this is rastaman music, real original form reggae. The original seven tracks are here with their select extended dubs. The album contains 'Repatriation,' 'Black Man's Redemption (Marcus Garvey),' 'Jah Judge Firm (Rastafari),' 'Zion Heights (Irie Meditation),' 'Reveal(ation)' and 'The (Great) Prophets.' It's abput freedom & unity for I N' I.
Onesty "My World"
The 'Way To Life' is simply love. Onesty's new album "My World" is very loving & compassionate. Onesty says 'show love like you feel.' There's nothing like the 'Love Of A Woman,' even though 'it's a man's world.' 'Life Starts' when 'I Rise' so open your eyes & enjoy it, or at least 'Get Up & Give In.' I invite you into "My World" of Onesty, it is a beautiful place. You will feel the love the 'One Moment' you listen, it's truly the way this earth was meant.
Horace Andy "Exclusively"
Originally released in 1982, Horace Andy's "Exclusively" has been released a fourth time. If you are a fan of 'Sleepy' than this is a must have album produced by Wackies. Andy was at his best during this period and the best his voice ever sounded. Every track is solid.My personal favorites are 'Bob Lives On,' 'Stop The Fuss,' 'Love Him,' 'Good Will Survive' & 'Live In Unity.'
The Elovaters feat The Late Ones 'Meridian'
Two of Americas best underground reggae bands join forces for "Meridian.' They are The Elovaters out of Boston, Ma & The Late Ones of Hawaii. Both of theirs flows crush it and are uptempo. This will hit in all their respective markets.
"Material riddim" Dutty Rock/Sean Paul
Everyone knows Sean Paul for his signature dancehall sound and becoming one of reggae's biggest success stories as an artist. Now he's a producer and his label Dutty Rock has signed dancehall artist Chi Ching Ching. He's just re-released the "Material riddim." This modern uptempo riddim has an all star cast, hits & melody. Sean Paul starts it with 'Roll Wi Di Don' while the biggest song comes in from the bad gyal Cecile & her new, original take on Madonna's 'Material World.' Wayne Marshall's 'Miss You Love' is probably about his wife Tami Chynn, who is still taking boys for a 'Ride.' Both good. Mr Vegas now has a second tune called 'Tek Him.' Remember Hollow Point, he returns with one of his best 'I Don't Mind.'
Eddie Charles "What Nice Bout Christmas"
I love the Caribbean style of music called parang. It's a mix of calypso, soca, mento & maybe a little latin. It's the Caribbean's Christmas music. Living legend & veteran Mr Eddie Charles already releases a new one for the holiday season called 'What Nice Bout Christmas.' It's a shame the music is dated and can only play that time a year. It has such a great groove. This one in particular also has great horns.