Album review
From The Roots
Horace Andy Meets Mad Professor
November 13, 2004

Tracking list

  1. Babylon Bridge
  2. The Bingy Man
  3. What You Gonna Do
  4. Gimme What Me Want
  5. Girl Don't Come
  6. Vanity Vanity
  7. For Me
  8. Runaway
  9. Dem Lie
  10. Rasta Business
  11. Zion The Holy Land
  12. Rise Up Now
  13. Don't Beat Her
  14. Change Your Ways
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 4 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3

Horace Andy's haunting falsetto has been imitated by scores of artists over the years and his compositions include some of the most covered material in reggae history. So, it's not that suprising that many reggae lovers know and appreciate the many talents of Horace Andy. Ironically, his best claim to fame came not because of his reggae roots, but because of his appearances in the 1990s with UK's trip-hop band, Massive Attack. Inevitably, Andy's work with Massive Attack brought him into the sphere of Neil Fraser aka Mad Professor, who collaborated with Massive Attack for their 1995 album, "No Protection", which led to the group's return to their experimental, cut and paste dub reggae and hip-hop roots. He and Andy entered the studio in 1995 as well and emerged with the "Life Is For Living" single and an album of the same name, one that came on the heels of Andy's successful UK single "One Love", with Massive Attack. The pair followed through with a re-recording of "Zion" the next year and the "Roots and Branches" album in 1997. Now, after a break of seven years, there's a brand new album out of the Ariwa Studios entitled "Horace Andy Meets Mad Professor - From The Roots". (It's even the first new full-length CD from Horace Andy in 4 years!) The listener is treated to 14 tracks that feature the highly distinctive, unusual voice of Horace Andy, the superb mixing skills of Mad Professor, and the solid playing by experienced musicians like Mafia & Fluxy, Sly & Robbie, Black Steel, Dean Fraser, Richard Doswell and Sky Juice. The instantly recognizable sound of a Mad Professor production is here, but instead of adding alot of weird dub effects he has kept the mix quite straight and real tight. With songs such as "Babylon Bridges", "The Binghi Man", "Rasta Business", "Zion The Holy Land" and "Rise Up Now" it's obvious that this album mainly deals with roots & culture. Besides that there's also room for other themes as expressed in songs such as "For Me" and "Don't Beat Her". Apart from a few weak tunes like "Gimme What Me Want" and "Girl Don't Come", the majority of the tracks on this album are solid efforts.

Teacher & Mr. T.