Thursday, September 29, 2005

Check It Out

This weekend in Wellington:

Friday 30 - Spice Traders (DJ Manray and the Spotlight Kid) @ Good Luck

Friday 30 - Hikoikoi Reserve and Spartacus R @ Sandwiches

Saturday 1 - DJ Lemon @ The Last Supper Club

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Roots and Culture - A DeeJay Explosion

Massive respect to the Roots and Culture Crew for another wicked party at the F:69 bar, Friday 23 September. Thanks to CoopaBlue and M*Pop for photos.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Album Review – New Testament – The Rootsman – Third Eye Music/MeteoSound Select Cuts

Respect to DJ Nastyk for his review of The Rootsman's album, New Testament.

The Rootsman is a musician who began his adventure in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1978 as a guitar player. His focus on the guitar lasted for only a short time as he realised the variety of other options available to him to pursue musically. The Rootsman then moved to Bradford, a place which has remained a base for him on his musical journey.

Since 1981 The Rootsman has produced vast amounts of music as well as working with a variety of people from many spectrums. Check the link for further information on him. The discography tab on his site gives a glimpse of the extent of his musical works as well as the variety of influences he has tapped into, resulting in the diversity of sounds he produces. A must check out! The Rootsman has also been a producer for many emerging talents and has been a driving force in collaboration between many distributors and producers. He strongly believes in collaboration and consciousness – two key components of true roots music. His efforts in staying true to the reggae world, while at the same time creating unique concepts and sounds are something I particularly appreciate about The Rootsman.

This album, New Testament, features vocals from a variety of artists such as Earl Sixteen, U Brown, Daddy Freddy, Jah Mason and many more. Although some of the album may not fit strictly into the spectrum of roots reggae, The Rootsman has definitely factored some key traditions to the sounds. My killer tracks without a doubt would have to be Earth Rightful Ruler with Fowlie Don and Action Alone with Bongo Chilli. Max respect to these riddims! Clean crisp recordings are a trademark of all of The Rootsman’s pieces, and these are clearly examples.

Without a doubt I plan to keep a close eye on this musician and will most definitely be adding more of his sounds to my collection. Check it out!


Sunday, September 25, 2005

Lee Perry and Mad Professor Review

Big Ups to DJ Spin Zero for his review of the Lee Perry and Mad Professor gig that took place on the 20th at the Town Hall.

'Eclectic' is one word that has been bandied about in reviews almost as much as 'epic'. Both of these come to mind in regard to the Lee Scratch Perry and Mad Professor concert. The first refers to the selections, the second only to the sound mix.

Cornerstone Roots was a fitting choice to lead for the veteran duo. Strictly roots and a well varied tempo set the crowd up for an evening where flow played a distant second to genre. With their highly accomplished rhythm section fluxing the feel from funky, downbeat, up-tempo and of course rootsy reggae, Cornerstone demonstrated a broad knowledge of reggae subgenres in their somewhat short set.

When the MP himself finally appeared in the darkness, the patient crowd was rewarded with some pure bass rub-a-dub, almost immediately followed by some upbeat dancehall style cuts and slower jungle. It was immensely satisfying to have a soundperson that knew how to drive the rig; you could feel the full effect without the harsh treble so often delivered at large scale concerts. Playing off ADAT (or something similar) allowed him to reconstruct the track instrument by instrument, fade the bass or vocals in/out, dub out riffs live, and create the performance he is famous for. The added touch of a double pitch changer on his microphone enhanced the old-school-ness of his electric, often synthesised, riddims.

Before long, the crowd was fully ready to see Mr Perry himself. Though he was more coherent than reports of last time, the concert still felt like more of a tribute to his achievements than a genuine desire to hear his vocal talents. Appearing to wield control, he was only as strong as the MP's beats which chop-changed as much as LP's trains of thought. This reviewer left for the after party after one too many versions of the children's song ‘This Old Man’.

King of dub? Yes, if one that means a self appointed symbol of an era that has surpassed him, leaving others to take things higher, while he revels in the rightfully earned glory. The Professor - if mad means unpredictable, he certainly deserves that title. Being quite a cheap party by international standards, one cannot complain given that the sound was at its best - heavy, clean and phat and the range of reggae-influenced material was enough to satisfy any curious dabbler. But what was missing was that something for the critical, the true-school, something that touched the roots of the true reggae lover. Was it flow? Quite possibly. Originality? Arguably. Heart? Difficult to say. Perhaps just the feeling that it was a goodbye showcase, not a parting gift of that spark from the Black Ark that touched so many back in the heyday. Definitely irie, sadly not high-grade. 7/10


Monday, September 19, 2005

Roots and Culture - A DeeJay Explosion

It's back by popular demand, so leave home early when Radio Active's Roots and Culture Crew holds up the final dance to celebrate the scuttling of the HMNZS Wellington in November. Keep the pressure down with the Roots and Culture Crew and special guests: Topknot, Art, Misteek, Spin Zero, Duke Willis, Ras Twig, Prince Alexander, DJ Lemon, Mighty Asterix, Steppa D, Manray, Iya Fari, Ras Stone and Jhan. Friday 23 September, 9pm till late, $15 presales from Slowboat Records. Come and join the Roots and Culture Crew and celebrate Jamaican Roots, Reggae, Dub, Ska and Dancehall at its best.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Eek A Mouse

Article from the Jamaica Observer about the re-emergence of reggae toaster Eek A Mouse.

Dub Organiser

The Yardwise family presents a night of Dub, Reggae and Dancehall, Tuesday 20 September, to celebrate the visit of the original Dub Organiser, Lee 'Scratch' Perry. Selectors Art, Misteek, Spin Zero, and Topknot will provide nuff heavy sounds, and the Matterhorn will take care of all of your Rum Punch needs and more!

The official after-party jam for the Lee Perry concert, don’t miss it...

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Vital Sounds 2nd Birthday Bash

Wellington's best loved reggae soundsystem, Vital Sounds, are 2 years old and to celebrate they are taking over Sandwiches for a night of pure bass heaven! Join Aotearoa's top MC's and selectahs - Manray, Topknot, Danny Lemon, The Spotlight Kid, Ras Stone & The Mighty Asterix, presenting the roots vibe as it's supposed to be. Friday 16 September at Sandwiches, from 10pm onwards - come and check out the authentic sounds of Jamaica.

Ninja Man

Update on Ninja Man and his plans to release "an album every year for the next five years" then make a career move.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Welcome To Jamrock Launch

Report on the Jamaican launch held in the weekend for Damian Marley's new album.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Top Ten Selections - Daniel Ring

Daniel began broadcasting the Unity Sound Radio show in early 2000, while on a road trip through and across the Australian countryside, holding down shows at various community radio stations while literally still on the road. In 2001 after settling in Lismore N.S.W. he began presenting the show on North Coast Radio, the beginning of a 2 year stay in which an initial interest in reggae music became a total passion. Since leaving NCR Daniel has continued to forward the sound, keeping it alive on the party scene, DJ'ing at a number of clubs, bars and parties in Melbourne and around his hillside home of Hepburn Springs Victoria. He is soon to launch a new sound which will broadcast on an exciting new Internet radio station by early November 2005. Watch this space, watch this sound! Big Ups to Daniel for his top-ten reggae LPs for September:

1. Soul from Jamdown – Darker then Blue -Blood and Fire
2. Chukki star - True Guidance - Chukki Star –Ariwa
3. Back to Roots - Benjamin Zephaniah and the Hazardous Dub Company - Acid Jazz.
4. Dragon War - Groundation with Don Carlos and the Congos - Young Tree Records.
5. African Anthem Dubwise (Deluxe Edition) - Mikey Dread – Auralux
6. Let Live - Midnite/I Grade - I Grade
7. Same Song/Unconquered Dub – Israel Vibration – Ras
8. Mysterious Nature – African Brothers - Zenah.
9. Fya - Dezarie - I Grade.
10.Only Love Can Conquer - Prince Allah - Blood and Fire

Big time favourite right now - Comin In - Courtney Melody - Safire 7"

Friday, September 09, 2005

Weekend Reggae Runnings

Hikoikoi Reserve, DJ Damon, Ras Stone @ Sandwiches - Friday

The Spice Traders, DJ Manray and the Spotlight Kid @ Havana - Friday

Rainbow Country @ Valve - Saturday

DJ Lemon @ The Last Supper Club - Saturday

Wednesday, September 07, 2005


Tune into Radio Active 89FM every Thursday night from 11-1 am for the Homebass show brought to you by a series of Radio Active DJs, including the Roots and Culture Crew, Carlito and Dunstar. This is a late-night showcase of Jamaican and reggae-influenced music, including new-school and ambient dub, reggae from New Zealand and around the world, dancehall, jungle and drum and bass.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Inner Circle

Article in which Roger and Ian Lewis of the legendary reggae group Inner Circle, talk about the history of the group, the immensely talented Jacob Miller, and Circle Sound Studios which they now run in Florida.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Roots and Culture - A Deejay Takeover

Photos by CoopaBlue


Spin Zero



Ras Twig

Prince Alexander

A selection of shots from the reggae party of the year which was held on Saturday 27 August - Roots and Culture - A Deejay Takeover. Make sure you get your tickets early for the grand finale on Friday 23 September at the F:69 Bar. Expect another night of pure roots and culture with only the most crucial cuts and righteous rhythms being played by Wellington's finest selectors.