Roots, Rock, Remixed
Bob Marley & The Wailers
Tuff Gong / Rock River - Quango Music
September 28, 2007

Track list
  1. Soul Shakedown Party (Afrodisiac Sound System Remix)
  2. Lively Up Yourself (Bombay Dub Orchestra Remix)
  3. Duppy Conqueror (Fort Knox Five Remix)
  4. Sun Is Shining (Yes King Remix)
  5. Soul Rebel (Afrodisiac Sound System Remix)
  6. African Herbsman (King Kooba Remix)
  7. Don't Rock My Boat (Stuhr Remix)
  8. Small Axe (Paul & Price Remix)
  9. Rainbow Country (DJ Spooky's Subliminal Funk Remix)
  10. Trenchtown Rock (Trio Elétrico Remix)
  11. 400 Years (Jimpster Remix)
    Bonus Track
  12. One Love (Cordovan Remix)
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3/4
To commemorate what would have been reggae legend Robert Nesta Marley's 59th birthday this coming Saturday February 6, this almost one-and-a-half year old album with dance remixes "Roots, Rock, Remixed" gets the belated review that it already deserved upon its release. Whether Bill Laswell's "Dreams Of Freedom ~ Ambient Translations Of Bob Marley In Dub", the Stephen Marley produced platinum selling "Chant Down Babylon" project or these remixes, strangely enough these projects are merely seen by huge numbers of Bob Marley & The Wailers fans as tampering with music that was almost holy before the disgraceful remixing and relicking was done, whereas they have for more than 30 years considered the heavily overdubbed and downmixed "Catch A Fire" album as it was released as one of Bob Marley's seminal musical milestones.

This "Roots, Rock, Remixed" is however a firstclass dance-remix-compilation of - not unlike the material chosen a decade earlier by (ragga-)junglists - early Bob Marley & The Wailers (mainly Lee Perry produced) all-time favorites that do more than justice to the original classic songs. Whether Afrodisiac Sound System who stay very close to the original "Soul Shakedown Party" and even the dancefloor dedicated "Soul Rebel" or the Bombay Dub Orchestra adding jive-DJ talk on top of "Lively Up Yourself", these are all intriguing modern-dance-remixes never losing the vibe (and vocals) of the originals. "Duppy Conqueror" gets the funky breakbeat treatment of the Fort Knox Five, followed by the beautiful reworking of "Sun Is Shining" by hip hop, dancehall, reggae and ska production duo Mark Rae & Rhys Adams a.k.a. Yes King.

The remix of "African Herbsman" by King Kooba is very soulful, before Stuhr contribute their very moody downtempo remix of "Don't Rock My Boat" and housy-lounge or is that loungy-house producers Paul & Price from L.A. impress with an absolutely brilliant remix of "Small Axe". The Subliminal Kid a.k.a. Paul Miller a.k.a. DJ Spooky, the only DJ on the scene with degrees in philosophy and French literature! and well-known to reggae-enthusiasts for his Trojan compilation "DJ Spooky In Fine Style ~ 50,000 Volts of Trojan Records" delivers a catchy funky remix of "Rainbow Country" followed by a wonderful "Trenchtown Rock" by Boozoo Bajou using their Trio Elétrico alias for this irresistable groove and a magnificent dub-house version of the only Peter Tosh song included here by Jimpster who concentrates on the riddim of "400 Years" however benefiting from snatches of Peter Tosh' baritone.

As a bonus track (two less than on the De-Luxe edition, which also includes the Fort Knox Five remix of "Soul Shakedown Party" and the DJ Dolores mix "Sun Is Shining") "One Love" is almost irrecognizably - as only song on this album - remixed in ambient downtempo style by Cordovan for a tribute to Bob Marley & The Wailers' music that can very appropriately be played this coming Saturday. Not for purists, but recommended for everyone else!