2 Times Revolution
CD / Digital Download
July 4, 2011
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 4/5||Backing : 4/5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 4/5|
Alborosie a.k.a. the 'Soul Pirate' was born in Sicily (1977) as Alberto D'Ascola. As a child he learned to play several instruments. In 1993 he formed the reggae band Reggae National Tickets. The band released several fine albums (he signed his first contract with BMG at the age of 17!) and was highly successful with their rootsy and swinging sound. In 2001 he moved to Jamaica where he started a label called Forward Records through which he released several highly popular singles. In 2006 he surprised us with the single "Herbalist" (banned on Jamaican radio by the authorities for glorifying ganja) and in 2007 "Kingston Town" and "Rastafari Anthem" were among the most spinned tunes.
Two years ago Greensleeves released Alborosie's much anticipated sophomore album "Escape From Babylon", the follow up to the "Soul Pirate" set which was pressed in limited quantities and mainly sold during Alborosie's European tour of 2008. The "Dub Clash" album hit the streets last year and 2011 sees the release of his long awaited album "2 Times Revolution", 16 tracks composed with his favored socially conscious lyrics and delivered in his trademark Jamaican-tinged vocals. The CD holds 15 tunes, the digital release offers one extra tune.
Alborosie is a man of many talents. He's a fine musician, writer, engineer and producer who often looks back to the music of the 70's and 80s. On this current album we hear and feel the spirit of those times on many tracks. Two tunes are quite different from the rest. First there is La Revolucion. Here he takes a bilingual turn, rhyming in both Spanish and English for a typical Alborosie song, paying tribute to the great revolutionary heroes (Emiliano Zapata, Fidel Castro, Che Guevara) of days gone by. The other is International Drama on which he embraces his Italian heritage, singing the plight of early Italian immigrants in New York.
The opening tune Rolling Like A Rock is a kind of 'Kingston Town' revisited, which is followed by Camilla. The herb tune is ok, but why use a couple of kids for the background vocals? The single Respect with Junior Reid is a boom tune with great lyrical content. It's very obvious Alborosie has listened extensively to Bob Marley & The Wailers. Who You Think You Are is a song that could have been on Bob Marley's 'Uprising' album. The same goes for the awesome Soul Train. A sure shot highlight on the album is a duet with Etana called You Make Me Feel Good, an heartfelt lovers tune, with Alborosie toasting in fine style!
He infuses hip-hop into Raggamuffin, a tune that isn't our cup of tea. Rude Bwoy Love (with Perfect Harmony) is the inevitable R'n'B track of this album, reminding us of 90's tunes. The mood gets right again with What If Jamaica, a lyrical gem inna nyabhinghi style. Killer tune with unknown female vocalists. The roots tune Tax War is produced in cooperation with King Jammy. It relicks a vintage Jammy's riddim, which originally was utilized for Junior Reid 's 1983 released single "Higgler Move".
With "2 Times Revolution" Alborosie has unleashed a decent reggae album.