Zap Pow
17 North Parade-VP Records
November 2, 2007

Track list
  1. This Is Reggae Music
  2. Sunshine People
  3. Last War
  4. Rootsman Reegae
  5. Some Sweet Day
  6. Let's Fall In Love
  7. Excuse Me
  8. Bubblin' Over
  9. United
  10. Mystic Mood
  11. Sweet Lovin' Love
  12. World
  13. Jah Haawn
  14. Tonight We Love
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3
Hardcore roots followers know Zap Pow for "The River", a wash of deep psychedelic Gnosticism cut at The Black Ark.

These tunes presented here are, in places, similar in spirit, since they express a deep mysticism and sense of reflection -- but they are not stylistically similar.

Instead of focusing on the free form dub visions of "The River", these tunes fuse a tight, radical funk with a jazz snare sound and a rootical lovers consciousness -- and it works beautifully.

"This is Reggae Music" features a Jimmy Smith style funky keyboard hook with Elvin Jones style snare cracks and rim shot pressure. "Sunshine People" is a soulful Neville Brothers style groove with a Radics sound on the drum and the bass. Beres Hammond's voice is immaculate throughout -- resonant, spirited, and sincere.

"Last War" is a deep roots meditation, with a quasi New Orleans funk influence on the vocal styling -- the dub is pure funky roots with an original take on a flying cymbals vibe -- very heavy sounds, original sounds. The same is true of the roots funk of "Rootsman Reggae".

It's a very strong release, from start to finish, showcasing near perfect musicianship, a clean and bright production sound -- deep, dark,moody and heavy -- but equally allowing space for very spacious hard funk and jazz vibes too.