Better World
Soul Majestic
Loa Tree Records
June 21, 2009

Soul Majestic - Better World Track list
  1. Better World
  2. Rough 'n Tuff (with Sly And Robbie)
  3. Feels Good (with Tony Moses)
  4. Next Generation
  5. Tonight ft. Gueen Omega
  6. First Light
  7. I Rise
  8. Guidance (with Luv Fyah)
  9. Musical Farmer
  10. Blue Mountain
  11. Send The Train
  12. Seek The Truth
  13. One Heart
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Essential -Votes: 12-
Very Good -Votes: 1-
Good -Votes: 0-
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Total votes : 13
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 44 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 5
Soul Majestic's musical recipe is not one whipped up by corporate interests for mass production of a cheap product to force feed the population, but one handed down from ancestors and elders, and developed through the process of sharing. This particular version emerged when three talented young musicians, Eric Iverson, David Lyons and Brian Jarvis connected in the fertile ground nestled between California's coast and Santa Barbara's majestic mountain range. Enter Oriana Sanders, a soulful songstress from Los Angeles. With a background in Soul and R&B, a stint with another Cali based reggae project, and a resume that included recording on two movie soundtracks, Oriana was the perfect compliment to Eric Iverson's colorful and complex music writing style and David Lyons' technical and intricate rock infused guitar licks.

Supported by a collection of quality and influential roots musicians including the explosive and skillful Jayme Arredondo on drums, steady rolling bass from Thomas "Toads" Marcelino, texture and vibes from Seth Theodore on keys, and at times a third vocalist and live horns, Soul Majestic is poised to take on the world. Sizzling musicianship, crowd-hyping dub breaks, occasional acoustic ballads, and fresh, inspiring lyrics delivered via alternating male/female lead vocals from Eric-I and Oriana continue to whet the appetite of a wide array of music enthusiasts.

Their self-titled debut album, released in 2002, was followed up in 2004 with a full band exodus to the birthplace of reggae and origin of their musical flavour, the island of Jamaica. While there, they recorded their second album, entitled 'Until That Day', at Bob Marley's Tuff Gong Studio in Kingston, enlisting the involvement of some of their heroes like Sly & Robbie and Anthony B. (Bio taken from the band's website)

June 2009 sees the release of their third and highly anticipated album entitled 'Better World'. This quality driven album sees the band in extremely fine shape including collaborations with Jamaica's foremost riddim tandem Sly & Robbie in Rough 'n Tuff, Tony Moses and Trinidad's Queen Omega. A lot of US based reggae and dancehall bands tend to incorporate an overdose of pop and rock influences in their music, while Soul Majestic has succeeded in creating their own original reggae sound, firmly and respectfully based in the tradition of roots music, one drop and rockers. The current album is a tight collection of reggae songs created with live instruments (live horns too -- thanks Celebrity Hornz!) mixed to the max by Seth Theodore at Million 7, and he really did a great job! The production is strong, crisp and fresh.

Lots of outstanding tunes here. One of the most compelling songs is I Rise. Check it out and witness the story of singer Oriana how he defeated cancer. The aforementioned song Rough 'n Tuff deals with the 'politrix' of the music industry. Feels Good with Tony Moses is such a groovy and hypnotizing -- retro flavored -- tune, it's makes one jump and sing out loud. Luv Fyah joins the band in Guidance, a strong spiritual song, while Queen Omega is present on the passionate lovers tune Tonight.

With Better World Soul Majestic has delivered a mature reggae album. Highly recommended!