Title
Artist
Label
Format
Date

Searching
Luciano
Daimond Rush Productions
Digital Release
September 14, 2014

Track list
  1. Searching
  2. Is There A Choice
  3. Sailing On
  4. Praise Jah feat. Capleton
  5. None Shall Escape
  6. See The Light feat. Marcia Griffiths
  7. Evil Forces
  8. Soul Rebel
  9. How Can Love So Right (Be So Wrong)
  10. Come Back My Baby
  11. Love Is What We Want feat. Lady Saw
  12. Haile Jah feat. Emperor Manjusha
  13. Jah So Sweet
  14. Vanguard
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Total votes : 4
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 4/5 Sleeve : 4
Since the release of his debut solo album "Moving Up" in 1993, Jepther McClymont aka Luciano has treated the reggae massive to approximately 35 full length studio albums including truly classic sets such as "One Way Ticket", "Where There Is Life", and "Sweep Over My Soul", all three produced by 'Fatis' Burrell of Xterminator fame. In 1998 Luciano and 'Fatis' Burrell parted ways and since then the foremost singer of roots reggae to have emerged during the past twenty years has worked with various producers in and outside Jamaica. Bouncing from studio to studio, and producer to producer, made that the quality of his albums started to become an issue. Some albums like for example "A New Day", "Great Controversy" and "United States Of Africa" were real good projects, but there were also quite a few others that didn't leave a serious impression.

And now his latest album, "Searching", hits the streets and although it isn't a bad album at all, this brand new set simply cannot be ranked among Luciano's very best. As expected Luciano's vocal power is as good as ever and there are also some compelling songs with incisive comments on this album, but all in all that ain't enough to make "Searching" a first rate production. Featured on this album are four collaboration efforts with Capleton, Marcia Griffiths, Lady Saw (?!) and the unknown Emperor Manjusha. None of these 4 collaborations is an essential contibution to this set. "Praise Jah" with Capleton is a decent tune and this also goes for the nyahbinghi flavoured "Haile Jah". The mellow "See The Light" with Marcia Griffiths gets a bit boring after a few listens, while the message tune "Love Is What We Need" with Lady Saw doesn't impress at all. Furthermore this album features renditions of Earl Zero's "None Shall Escape (The Judgement)" and The Wailers' "Soul Rebel". In particular "Soul Rebel" gets a real nice interpretation, with Luciano acting as singer and deejay.

When it comes to the other 8 tracks featured on this album, there's enough to enjoy to the fullest. It starts with title track and album opener "Searching", which is an entertaining tune underpinned by an great original riddim with great horns. Next comes a standout effort, the moving "Is There A Choice". Partly sung and partly spoken, the latter deals with serious issues/problems the world faces today. Here we hear Luciano at his very best. It's followed by the acoustic "Sailing On". This song more or less touches the same theme, but musically isn't as strong as the previous track. "Evil Forces" is a tune that has to grow on you, while the solid "Jah So Sweet" is the kind of song we know so well from many other Luciano albums. The album rounds off with "Vanguard", a solid roots piece with some echo-laden sounds. Luciano is also able to deliver nice romantic tunes as once again is proven by the two lovers pieces. "How Can Love So Right (Be So Wrong) comes across a revitalized "Darker Shade Of Black" riddim (Sound Dimension's classic riddim based on the Beatles "Norwegian Wood"), but it's the more appealing "Come Back Me Baby" that leaves the best impression.

"Searching" isn't one of Luciano's best albums, but it has its moments.