A few years ago, West African music obsessive and Philophon label boss Max Weissenfeldt decided to make some roots reggae with his friend and fellow drummer Josie Coppola. Yet this would be no regular reggae, as they'd be working on songs by Ghanaian artist Y-Bayani (real name Yusef Hussain). Since then, the project has developed further with the addition of a second lead singer, Baby Naa (Naomi Addy), a clutch of talented musicians and a Ghanaian choir. The result is this debut album, a wonderfully hazy, sun-kissed shuffle that does a brilliant job in putting a new, Afro-centric spin on Jamaican roots reggae. The riddims are strong, the multi-lingual vocals superb, the musicianship spot on and the production authentically warm and weighty. In other words, it's an unlikely gem.
( 3LP / )