Reaching Out
Ras Midas
JML Records
July 14, 2006

Track list
  1. Crazy World feat. Germaine
  2. Reaching Out
  3. Broke Your Foot
  4. One Step At A Time
  5. Unfolding
  6. Racism
  7. Pride And Joy feat. Dan-I Spencer
  8. Living In This World
  9. Women Struggle
  10. Such A Long Time
  11. Meet Me By The River
  12. Neocolonialism
  13. Mystery Babylon feat. Dan-I Spencer
  14. They Donít Like
  15. World of Catastrophe
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 3 Backing : 3 Production : 3 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
Jamaican-born Lorenzo Nembhard, among reggae followers better known as Ras Midas, emerged on the scene in the early 1970s. He made his first professional recordings in 1972 and scored a big international hit, "Kude A Bamba", with producer Harry J in 1976. The single was recorded in English and Swahili and sold half a million copies worldwide, which meant Ras Midas' breakthrough to a larger audience worldwide. He was also the first artist to record Reggae in French. "Rastaman In Exile" earned 'Album of The Year' in France, with the help of his hit single, "Too Long In The Wind"/"Tout Temps Dan Le Vent". Ras Midas later signed with AZ Disc and Celluloid before forming his own label, JML Records, in the 1990's.

With "Reaching Out" Ras Midas delivers his ninth full length album, which features 15 new original tracks, all of them recorded at Straight Ahead Studio in California with a multi-ethnic group of musicians and singers from the San Francisco Bay Area. While listening to the tracks included on this album it's obvious that this set is primarily made for the American market. Most of the tunes have a light vibe, sound well polished and carry a strong mainstream feel, thus making them more accessible for a broader audience. That's probably also the reason why this album includes a few hiphop and dancehall fueled efforts like the mediocre "Crazy World" and "Broke Your Foot". Most entertaining and enjoyable tracks are "Living In This World", the excellent "Women Struggle", "Meet Me By The River", "Mystery Babylon", the wicked "World Of Catastrophe", and the title track, "Reaching Out", which expresses the true global commitment of universal love and human solidarity for social and political change wherever democracy does not exist.

"Reaching Out" isn't exactly an album that will appeal to hardcore reggae fans, but surely one that will find its way to his loyal fans and to those who like to listen to easy accessible reggae music with good lyrical content.