One Ton/Nation Music-Rootdown Distribution
CD, LP & MC
August 17, 2007
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 5||Backing : 5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 5|
Phenom Melody is the moniker
that Swiss singjay Dennis Furrer a.k.a. Phenomden uses especially for
this "Style-Generator" album that is a phenomenal (pun intended) tour de
force. Sheer brilliance shines through in everything on and about this
album, even in the choice of the name Phenom Melody as a tribute to the
Melodies that took the spotlight in the second half of the 80s - when in
the post-'Sleng Teng'-era digital riddims dominated the dancehalls - like
Bobby Melody, Courtney Melody, Delroy Melody, Lilly Melody, Mikey Melody
and Singing Melody to name a few ... As usually released on One Ton Records already "Style
Generator"'s sleeve design (by Buzz Maeschi) makes clear that this is a
serious project, as this album looks like it could have come out of any
leading Jamaican studio in the second half of the 80s. And The Scrucialists' guitar
player Luc Montini, for this album operating as Belly Ranking laid most of
the riddims and produced this album with Philip 'One Ton' Schnyder von
Wartensee, bassplayer of the legendary Swiss reggae band Ganglords as executive-producer and
introducing alongside Phenom Melody the artist Sturr Lynx a.k.a. Stereo
Luchs on an album that seems to simply have suddenly down from the skies
after a 20 year journey.|
The title of opening track "Computer Riddim" unveils the real star of this "Style Generator" album as Phenom Melody pays in his native yet almost incomprehensible Schwytzerdütsch (even if your German is above par, Schwytzerdütsch is harder for a native German speaker than Patois for a native English speaker) a tribute to (the revival) of the riddims from the start of the digital era and the first rub-a-dub artists, followed by a booming digital riddim laid by Silly Walks Movement together with Supersonic Sound's Junior Blender in true 80s digital-style backing the wonderful "Mach Dis Ding" and the first combination with Stereo Luchs, the girls tune "So Fein" and a very nice tune about bathing and pools "Badi Badi" with all the vocal gimmickry that was en vogue among the 80s singers and deejays used by Phenom Melody how he swims faster than Franziska von Almsick.
A brilliant tune about the frustration "Spam" in you inbox causes is delivered absolutely fabulous over Winston Riley's 'Stamina Daddy'-riddim, followed by the entertaining combination with Stereo Luchs "Drama Ding" over a King Jammy's riddim. Every tune is giving you nothing but sheer joy (that is, if you are not one of those who believe that the development of reggae or worse its existence ended with 'Sleng Teng') and so do Stereo Luchs' great twist on hip hop pioneer KRS-One's "Illegal Business" for his "Download Business" over a riddim build by Phenom Melody and Phenom Melody's own real 80s style story "Unfall" over a riddim that Belly Ranking clearly based on the digital relicks of 'Things And Time'.
Phenom Melody delivers the brilliant boast "Fezz Stuck Musig" over Wayne Smith' and King Jammy's 'Sleng Teng'-variation 'E20' a.k.a. 'World Best Lover' before riding that other all important early digital riddim by that other (unfortunately late) great dub and dancehall producer King Tubby 'Tempo' for a serious tune warning those attending dancehall juggling and clashes against "Tinitus" and using Maurice 'Jack Scorpio' Johnson's version of the 'Heavenless'-riddim with Belly Ranking's guitar wailing over it for the strange but excellent Phenom Melody & Stereo Luchs combination "Chüelschrank Stil". A more straight forward Belly Ranking relick of 'Things And Time' backs Phenom Melody's upful delivered "Das Woni", before Stereo Luchs describes the new "Stil Und Mode" in laid back 80s style over a synth riff dominated riddim by Belly Ranking co-produced by Matthias 'P. Mento' Tobler, the same riddim that Phenom Melody uses for the only socially engaged tune on this album, the great "Millenium" describing the more than 7 years that have gone by since the first of January 2000.
Stereo Luchs then bigs up the dances in his own Swiss hometown Zürich in "Züri Dance" over a Belly Ranking that sounds like a very heavy digitalized and sped up digital relick of 'Cherry Oh Baby', before Phenom Melody closes this magnificent 80s style digital reggae album with his Ganglords backed "Style-Generator", that is vocally, lyrically and with its heavy heavy 'Heavenless'-backing a great way to round off this album. As a dancehall aficionado there is absolutely no way you can afford not to buy this album!