Kingston Konfidential EP
Martei Korley
Kassamara / Martei Korley
Digital Release
July 9, 2014

Track list
  1. Concrete Flower
  2. Rub A Dub Soldier
  3. Can't Be Wrong
  4. Blessed Love
  5. Blessed Dub
  6. Truth Be Told
  7. Sweat
  8. Sweat Dub
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3
Martei Korley... Martei who?! was our first reaction when we received his debut EP "Kingston Konfidential". A google search learned that this Martei Korley is the Danish/Ghanaian photographer and creative director of LargeUp.com, a global platform for Caribbean culture. He always had a deep passion for reggae music and after early stints as a bass player in Copenhagen, Denmark, and New York City, he embarked on a career as a reggae singer in his second home in Kingston, Jamaica. There he came in contact with some of reggae music's biggest names, helping to enrich his musical soundscape. Among the producers who have gravitated towards his sound are renowned saxophonist Dean Fraser, Paul S.C.U.B.I. Smith and Firehouse Crew's Mitchum "Khan" Smith.

Collaborations with the legendary Firehouse Crew, Carol "Bowie" McLaughlin and Denmark's electro genius Yo-Akim led to the creation of "Kingston Konfidential", on which Martei Korly delivers a collection of personal songs conceived in the heart of Kingston JA. The first track, the beautiful love song "Concrete Flower", instantly makes clear that Martei Korley is a sophisticated soulful vocalist with a distinctive style. Next comes the only tune and riddim familiar to our ears, the previously released "Rub A Dub Soldier" on Irievibrations Records' "Rub A Dub Market Riddim" from 2012. When you listen to "Can't Be Wrong" for the first time, you might think it's just a love song, but it isn't. The seductive lyrics chronicle the yearning that characterizes long-distance unions, while abstractly referencing the artist's own relationship with Jamaica. Two versions of "Blessed Love" are presented here. First there's the decent vocal cut and then the nicely done dub version. Besides touching the theme of facing problems in a relationship in "Truth Be Told", there's also room for expressing faith in Rastafari, which lyrically makes it more interesting. At the end of the "Kingston Konfidential EP" the listener is again treated to a lovers piece worth hearing. "Sweat" is underpinned by a powerful riddim with the straight vocal version followed by its dub counterpart.

Martei Korley shows potential as a singer and songwriter, making him an artist to watch for in the near future.