Title
Artist
Label
Format
Date

Just Passing Through
Keth & Tex
Kebar Music
CD / Digital Release
August 18, 2015

Track list
  1. Back Into Your World
  2. Life Goes On
  3. Just Passing Through
  4. We Can Make It
  5. Righteous Man
  6. I'm Lost
  7. Sweet Jamaica
  8. Why Do I Cry
  9. Keeping It Real
  10. Gotta Represent
  11. Respek
  12. Standing In
  13. Born Winners
  14. Back Into Your Dub
  15. Life Goes On (Version)
  16. Sweet Jamaica Dub
  17. Winning Dub
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
KEITH & TEX. The Rocksteady Era was ignited with the duo's timeless songs that are versioned and championed to this day. Keith Rowe and Phillip "Texas" Dixon have maintained a massive following with live performances that stretch throughout Creation. Amazing that they have released just a handful of albums and are still on the Frontline. Well, they have just released their first new collection of tracks in almost 20 years; aptly titled "Just Passing Through". A stunning body of work that defines endurance, vision and respect within the music community.

KEITH & TEX's journey began in 1966 as part of a five member group. After being turned down by Sir COXSONE Dodd and Duke Reid; the five became two. They caught the attention of Derrick Hariott. As a result, a slew of instant classics flowed ; including "Tonight", "This Is My Song" and "Stop That Train". This song has been versioned numerous times. Think Scotty's "Draw Your Brakes", Big Youth's "Cool Breeze" and even rapper Vanilla Ice visited the track in the '90's; giving the duo a surge of recognition. Keith & Tex kept levels sky high until 1970 when Keith emigrated to the U.S and Tex to Canada. Keith released some great works for Lee Perry in the early '70's and some singles on his KEBAR label. Since then, they reunited for the live circuit and released fresh material in 1997 for "Together Again". Fast forward to 2013. Their performance at the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival sparked massive response. A stellar collection of their best tracks was released in the U.S the same year. "Redux" was released in Europe the following year on Soulbeats Records. This year they mashed up SNWMF again and major festivals in Europe. Never fade away. Massive respect to Shizuo Ishii (Overheat Records) who have helped the legends stay alive in Japan and beyond.

"Just Passing Through" is a worldwide collaboration. Musicians include Ariwa legend Errol "BLACK STEEL" Nicholson, Austrian powerhouse IRIE ITES, Isreal's Jeremiah Ben Zion and California based Soulutionaries and Dynamos (both top bands). Massive engineering by Victor "Ticklah" Axelrod, Carl Fletcher, Brian Dixon, Ben Zion, Tyler Pu'unui and Doc Harris. Safe to say they have the full attention of musicians/engineers from region to region.

"Back Into Your World" is magic! Backed by San Francisco's Dynamos, this is a glorious Rocksteady piece that is pure Love and showcases their Divine vocal and harmony power. So sweet!! "Life Goes On" features Black Steel and Mellow T adding a nice touch. Totally urgent track with poignant lyrics and arrangement. These two can sing with the best of them!! The title track is beautiful; Black Steel's licks are amazing. The vocal range and depth is true experience. "We Can Make It" is a Soulful ballad that echoes the determination that carried them in the early stages of their career. A joyful upliftment with great riddim from Tyler Wong. "Righteous Man" is a solid Roots piece from Irie Ites. The duo ride a KILLER riddim with conciousness and flawless flow. Pure dynamite!! "I'm Lost" is a musical shower of Love. Harking memories of 1967, they gloriously ride a Black Steel/Mellow T riddim with X amount of class . The harmony level is so rich here, you might think it's a five man harmony. Boom!

"Sweet Jamaica" beckons the listener for a closer look inna Dancehall style; the blend of Black Steel's guitar work and Mellow T's Digi touch strikes a brilliant balance. "Why Do I Cry" is an instant classic. They lay out Heart and Soul on this powerful observation that has a slight Ariwa atmosphere. Superb! "Keeping It Real" visits Jimmy London's "Til I Kissed You" in full splendor. Rocking steady all the while. "Gotta Represent" is sensational. Irie Ites lays down The Mighty Diamonds "One Brother Short" riddim and Keith and Tex deliver a reality check that is a bin shaker. Wow! "Respek" is chune. Jeremiah Ben Zion delivers a fine riddim that fits the Duo's power just nice. A song of worldly observation and common decency for one another. "Standing In" is another Rocksteady gem that ranks with the power of "Tonight". Real music with some of the most beautiful harmonies to be heard in some time. Standout selection. "Born Winners" is a fine track. A relick of Derrick Harriot's "The Loser". A lovely ode to the Ricksteady Era and their endurance to this very day. Great riddimwise with ethereal harmonies. We are treated to three Dubs and one version. All outstanding with "Sweet Jamaica Dub" taking a JAMMY's edge and "Winning Dub" on the Tubby's theory.

2015 has seen legendary artists release their first new works in years or decades. KEITH & TEX's "Just Passing Through" is definitely worth the wait. Their sweet vocals and timeless harmony power are as rich as ever. The balance of Rocksteady, Lovers and Roots Reggae is flowing and versatile. Someone for everyone in this classic set. Yes, only a handful of Keith & Tex albums released; this one continues their legacy in regal manner and ranks as one of the Top Five of 2015. Grab your copy. Go DEH!!!