Roots Wine & Roses
CD / Digital Release
September 26, 2015
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 5||Backing : 5||Production : 5||Sound quality : 5||Sleeve : 4|
Some artists deliver their best recordings when they work under the watchful guidance of a particular producer. This certainly goes for Jahmel, whose best works are produced by Roydale 'Andy' Anderson, the one who discovered the singer's talent in a dance hall in Rochester, New York. Roydale Anderson produced Jahmel's worthy 1983 debut album "Watchful Eyes" (in the late 1999 re-released on the cd "Now And Then" with the addition of 6 new tracks recorded from 1996 to 1998) the 2008 released album "Timeless" and "Reflections" from 2010. In 2004 Donovan Germain put out a self-titled Jahmel album, and although it wasn't a bad album at all, it just didn't have the same vibe and consistency as the Roydale produced sets.
So, it's good to have a brand new album from Jahmel with Roydale Anderson in the producer's chair. This inexplicably overlooked and far too underrated impressive conscious vocalist treats the true reggae fan to a 12 track album of pure niceness!! As the title "Roots Wine & Rose" indicates, this album features roots tunes as well as a few romantic songs. When it comes to dancehall there's "Special Invitation" on the "Stalag" riddim, a true anthem for the lovers of the old skool dancehall style. Besides the "Stalag" riddim and Horace Andy's "Zion Gate" riddim (for "Zion Gate"), this collection features a whole heap of revitalized classic riddims, a nice challenge for the riddim spotter to find their original version.
The stirring "Here I Come" and then the first class "Zion Gate", both being original tunes and not covers of the well known Dennis Brown and Horace Andy songs, instantly make clear what the listener will be treated to: powerful songs with a strong old skool vibe, sung by a mature singer whose songwriting and vocal skills hardly ever fail to impress. Concluding the opening of "Roots Wine & Roses" is a tune which belongs to some of the best efforts this esteemed album has to offer. "Psalms", which somehow sounds familiar to our ears, is a big roots piece that will certainly appeal to most roots heads. All in all the first three tracks form a fiery opening part and are great to listen to. Also the rest of this collection features some real gems such as "Africa" and the outstanding "Home Sweet Home", which cultural roots fans as well as African descendants will surely love. In between there's the massive "Ticket", a piece that really strikes a chord when you listen to it. And then there are also the sweet lovers tunes "Roots Wine & Roses", "Kiss And Make Up" and "My Heart", which are solid efforts that bring some lovely vibes.
The 12 songs included on "Roots Wine & Roses" show such a level of skill and talents that it's hard to understand why Jahmel hasn't had more success than he actually has to date. And thus, most likely this Jahmel album, just like his previous ones, will go down as ultimately unnoticed and unappreciated, which is very unfortunate and a great mistake. So we urge all reggae fans to wake up and really take a listen to this "Roots Wine & Roses" album. Pretty sure that, if you're not already, you too will become a Jahmel fan.