September 10, 2011

#1 - Digitaldubs Track list
  1. Transe Amaz˘nica (Abrindo os Caminos)
  2. Fyah Bun Dem feat. Ranking Joe
  3. Bandido de Gravata feat. Dada Yute
  4. Pirate's Game feat. Earl Sixteen
  5. Kaliman Dreams
  6. Jah Me Guia I feat. Jeru Banto
  7. War And Crime feat. Dada Yute
  8. Dub Echoes Theme
  9. Your Love is Overdub feat. Brinsley Forde
  10. Liga Ligalize feat. Jeru Banto
  11. Upbeat Vibes
  12. Sigue tu Instinto feat. Tiano Bless
  13. Justice And Equality feat. Ranking Joe
Rate this album!
Cast your vote below.

Essential -Votes: 8-
Very Good -Votes: 3-
Good -Votes: 1-
Average -Votes: 0-
Disappointing -Votes: 0-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 0-

Total votes : 12
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3/4
Checking the origins of releases -- albums as well as singles -- that were put out in the last ten years or so, will prove that Reggae truly has gone international. In that period of time we've been offered a decent amount of noteworthy Reggae productions with a global appeal coming from countries like Germany, Austria, France, Sweden, Spain, Australia, and the US Virgin Islands. And now we can also add Brazil to that ever growing list, as ROIR has put out the fourth full-length album from Rio de Janeiro based Digitaldubs.

Formed in 2001, Digitaldubs was the first reggae/dub/dancehall sound system to emerge in Rio de Janeiro. They have regularly played throughout Brazil, including a weekly party in Rio, exposing the sound system culture to a new, eager audience. But, more than write a new chapter on the history of Brasilian sound system culture, they bring new and unique flavors to Brasilian and Reggae music. In the last years they made tours in Europe and Latin America. With a studio and a label (Muzamba), Digitaldubs produced and released albums and singles featuring internationally known singers and deejays like Ranking Joe, Earl Sixteen, Lone Ranger, Sylvia Tella, Tippa Irie, Daddy Freddy and local talents such as B NegŃo, Mr. Catra, Duda do Borel, Dada Yute, Tiano Bless, and Jeru Banto. Digitaldubs' name also appears on some international compilations like "Roots Of Dub Funk 5" (UK 2006), "Wordsound Made in Brasil" (USA 2006), "The Inspiring New Sounds Of Rio de Janeiro" (USA 2007) and on the original soundtrack for the documentary "Dub Echoes", released on Soul Jazz Records (UK 2009).

While listening to the 13 tracks (instrumentals, dubs & vocal cuts) gathered on this disc, one simply has to come the conclusion that Digitaldubs' "#1" is a well produced album that benefits from the expertly laid riddims and the involvement of such legendary vocalists as Ranking Joe, Earl Sixteen, and Brinsley Forde of Aswad. The mesmerizing slow-paced instrumental, Transe Amaz˘nica (Abrindo os Caminos), opens the set and proves to be an entertaining effort. Then it's time for "Fyah Bun Dem", with veteran deejay Ranking Joe delivering his conscious lyrics across a wicked bass-driven steppers riddim. Things get a bit slower when Dada Yute's "Bandido de Gravata" drops in. A real nice tune with wonderful horns on top of the haunting riddim. Earl Sixteen's awesome "Pirate's Game", with also traditional Brazilian instrumentation utilized for the riddim, is one of the highpoints featured here. All in all we've been treated to a worthy opening of this album, and there's more good stuff to enjoy. Tracks like the echo-laden instrumental "Kaliman Dreams", Dada Yute's solid "War And Crime", Brinsley Forde's dubbed up lovers piece "Your Love Is Overdub", and Ranking Joe's "Justice And Equality" can be reckoned among the best tracks of "#1", which surely doesn't imply that the remaining efforts aren't worth hearing!

Digitaldubs' "#1" is a thoroughly enjoyable and sometimes enthralling collection of tunes. Interesting release, in particular for fans of UK steppers and dub.