Back For The First Time
Lustre Kings
(Enhanced) CD / Digital Release
August 12, 2011

Back for the First Time - Perfect Giddimani Track list
  1. Eye Wata
  2. Hold On (Buju)
  3. See U When U Get There
  4. HIM Smile
  5. The Highest Degree (Interlude)
  6. Fakers (One Man Alone)
  7. Mickle Mek Muckle
  8. Mash Up Di Ting feat. Ginjah
  9. Weed is Better Than Liquor (Interlude)
  10. Never Gonna Stop
  11. Naturally
  12. Slave Driver (Livicated To Peter Tosh)
  13. Coming On
  14. When The Lion Roar
  15. Doom's Day
  16. Back For The First Time
Rate this album!
Cast your vote below.

Essential -Votes: 6-
Very Good -Votes: 6-
Good -Votes: 5-
Average -Votes: 1-
Disappointing -Votes: 1-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 0-

Total votes : 19
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
In the past decade Lustre Kings have consistently maintained their high standards with the release of worthwhile albums from Turbulence, Lutan Fyah, Midnite, Al Pancho, Ras Attitude, Messenjah Selah, and Jahdan Blakkamore. With Perfect's "Back For The First Time", the well-respected Roots & Culture label from Oakland, California, adds another remarkable reggae album to its catalogue.

Perfect (born Greg Rose, Bamboo, St Ann, Jamaica) released his debut set "Sweet And Black" around 2002, but had to wait until 2005 to achieve an international breakthrough with the hitsingle "Handcart Bwoy". The next year Austrian reggae label DHF Records released his sophomore album "Giddimani", which in 2008 was followed by "Born Dead With Life" and the Romain "Sherkhan" Chiffre produced "French Connection" set in November 2009, both released by Irievibrations Records from Austria. In the summer of that same year (2009) there was also the digitally released, self-produced "Karma" album on the artist's own Chalice Palace Music imprint.

Therefore "Back For The First Time" is actually Perfect's sixth full length album. With this brand new collection, the singjay treats us to 13 fresh solo tunes, a strong combination with Ginjah, and two interludes that deal with Babylon system and the good herb respectively. Working with the Zion I Kings production team (a collaboration of Zion High Productions, I Grade, and Lustre Kings) and fine musicians such as "Santa" Davis, Earl "Chinna" Smith, Dean Fraser, Tony Green, Dalton Brownie, Tuff Lion, Nick Fantastic, Laurent "Tippy I" Alfred, Dean Pond, and Bongo Herman, have led to an album that brings back the authentic roots vibe of earlier singles such as "How Come", "Black Marcus", and, of course, "Handcart Bwoy".

Don't know if chosing the Sam Gilly (of Austrian House Of Riddim) produced "Eye Wata" as album opener before continuing with the Zion I Kings production works was purposely done as if to express the shift from working with European producers to collaborating with US-based production houses, but it nevertheless would make sense regarding the concept of the album. The sufferer's piece "Eye Wata" is a solid effort, but when the first single taken from this album, "Hold On (Buju)" (a well-done tribute to the incarcerated Buju Banton), leaps from the speakers, it's clear that musically there's a significant different vibe between the first track and the other tunes included here.

Throughout the album, Perfect showcases that his lyrical delivery doesn't differ from what he has done on previous albums, but vocally he definitely shows more control when it comes to voice different types of riddims. In particular melodic riddims like e.g. the ones that underpin tunes such as "HIM Smile", "Fakers" and "Never Gonna Stop" require a more singing style, which the man known as "Giddimani" shows he can handle to full effect as well. There's no real weak or mediocre effort around, solely solid to excellent tunes. The latter include the wonderful "HIM Smile", the catchy "Mickle Meka Muckle", the duet with Ginjah "Mash Up Di Ting", the great "Coming Up", the wicked "Lion Haffi Roar", and "Doom's Day". The album ends with the title track, to our ears a somewhat strange piece that carries a completely different vibe.

Without any doubt this "Back For The First Time" set is one of contemporary roots music's finest. The musical quality makes this a worthwhile purchase, so make sure you grab it!