Grand Shelf Reggay
xRob Black
Superfly Studio
Vinyl LP / Digital Release
March 10, 2016

Track list
Side A.
  1. Five Years Off
  2. Winefest Overture
  3. Touch Of Cassiopeia
  4. Reggae Top Branch
  5. Southlights Rug
Side B.
  1. Liquidin' The Rock
  2. Unstablement Room
  3. El Spirito
  4. Splendid Isolation
  5. Neptune Subblast
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Lead instruments : 5 Backing : 5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 5
Anyone interested in the sound of the early reggae era should definitely check "Grand Shelf Reggay", the excellent full-length debut album of Polish multi-instrumentalist, arranger, composer, and producer xRob Black. The latter, who was at the helm of of the debut album of a Polish band named CT-Tones, is a key figure in the local ska/early reggae scene and already drew attention with his highly acclaimed singles "The Boss Ripper b/w Soul Snack" (2012) and "Majestic Twelve" (2014).

On "Grand Shelf Reggay", xRob Black celebrates the ruling sound of Jamaica from the late '60s/early '70s in a great way, and it's obvious that this passionate and great connoisseur of Jamaican music exactly knows what he's doing. The ten, mostly organ-dominated instrumental scorchers featured on this album, show that he fully has succeeded in sublimely recreating that classic early reggae sound, not least due to the man's amazing ability to play and record all of the instruments himself. Besides that the production quality is top-notch and all tracks have a very crisp sound. The album, which blends ska, rocksteady, roots & calypso, is an entertaining affair from beginning to end and thus provides nuff listening pleasure. Some of the tracks deliver the finest funky Kinston reggae that reminds of Toots & The Maytals (unquestionable the first to use the term 'reggae' on the Leslie Kong produced "Do The Reggay" from 1968), while others transport you back to the days of skinhead reggae la Symarip and Harry J All Stars. Whether it's the fast dance tempo of a track like "El Spirito", or the more slower paced tracks such as "Touch Of Cassiopeia" and "Neptune Subblast", it's all as good as it gets.

The vinyl LP comes in a plain cardboard cover with artwork made by Marek Bogdanski aka Dreadsquad, who has released this album on his own label, Superfly Studio.