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MESSIAN DREAD PRESENTS A HEAVYWEIGHT DUBWISE SELECTION WITHOUT OBJECTION

WWW, August 2014 -It's been close to a decade since Messian Dread's album "Showcase" was released and it has been years since the Dubroom released anything of significance out of the studio. Now that quite a number of singles and EP's have been released this year, the time has come to present Messian Dread's first full length Dub album since ages and what an album it is: twelve top Dub shots featuring a host of legendary and skillful vocalists and much more.

Those who have been reading or following the Dubroom throughout the years, will know about the fact that after releasing countless of singles and albums in his very specific sound, Messian Dread was "completely finished". This year 2014, however, saw the Dubroom productions in quite a new sound to the surprise of some. In May, someone wrote: "Messian Dread make new Dub? I thought you were through you said on Dubroom?" as a comment on the first release in that new sound.

During May-June 2014, the Dubroom Studio was on steroids. Obtaining several vocal licenses and something more: major upgrades in hardware and software that gave room for an enormous expansion. With the necessary legal licenses to actually release music featuring the heavyweights like you can find on this album, the challenge was to produce riddims and mixes that would actually give due respect to these vocalists. And, yes: given the fact that here we have twelve Heavyweight Dub shots, you can say that the challenge is successfully taken!

All the twelve tracks on this album, including the bonus tracks you can find on the physical CD version of this album, are original Dubroom riddims. The bass lines, the drums, the chord progressions, everything, with the exception of some skank lines, percussion and horns but even these recordings are heavily changed to fit the riddim. Every riddim is especially produced to suit the works of the vocalists, and mixed by Messian Dread into the Dubs on this album. Mixed with more care and effort than any other mix before, perhaps with the exception of the very first ones back in the previous century.

The result of all that care and effort is found in this well-balanced, but all-heavyweight selection of Dub tracks featuring -next to the listed artists- singers like Ras Khaleel, Tallis, Assante, Don Goliath and UK based Mandy Edge. There are spiritual and conscious tracks, there are funny tracks and tunes that simply demand their presence. The title of the album might be a bit theatrical, there's not one word that's not describing the contents however. 

THE TRACKS:

1. Dennis Alcapone - Dub The Dub You Dubwise

The track opens as if it were a normal Reggae tune: full horns and skank section (recorded at Ariwa studio) playing the introduction, a drum roll, Dennis Alcapone drops in and starts to chant. Then, the echo machine is turned on and the track stops, gets a rewind and starts again. This time, it's heavy Dub as the horn section turns into a sharp razor and Dennis Alcapone runs through all sides of the echo chamber. 

It's the opening of the track as well as the album. Indeed, heavyweight dubwise with a very clear message running through in the same time. The drums and instruments are at times completely transformed into what sounds like a Steel Drum, while Dennis Alcapone jumps in and out delivering words for meditation. 

2. Dan Man - Blaze The Dubwise

Striking a match, a bubbling sound, laughing, horns (played by the UK based Fire Face Music collective) dropping in. Dan Man telling us to listen to the versatile sound of "Blaze the Dubwise" as he guides us through this rub a dub style riddim. Fire and water, some intelligence and a lot of blazing effects. Yes, it's about -let's say- Original Ireness which is so much better than original slackness. Keep the fire blazing, hotter than hot. 

As the track progresses you'll hear sliding guitars and sweet synths on top of a pumping drum and bass line, everything mixed into an Ire Dubwise. This is not the kind of fire the wicked shall catch, this is the kind of fire that goes bubbling through the water before it brings what it can bring. The kind of fire that requires intelligence, before it delivers the niceness it can deliver.

3. Dillinger - Dwell In Love And Dubwise

No, this is not just a shortened version of the previously released extended Dub. It's a completely different mix with a different vibe. Where it lacks the silky backing vocals by Don Goliath, it has Dan Man introducing the track and dropping words here and there during the 3 3/4 minutes of pure Dubwise energy that follows. Where it has less chanting by Dillinger, it contains much more Dub mixing and significantly more militancy in the vibe.

When the riddim drops after about a minute, Dan Man steps in and the effects go totally wild as he speaks. Horns morphing into drums, or is the other way around? The drum and bass drop in and continue for a while, only to stop and give the horns full time as it's soaked in an endless echo. When they drop in again, it takes a while before Dillinger starts to chant, leading us right to the end.

4. Trinity - Light Of This Dubwise

There's one thing that the album version clearly has in common with it's previously released extended Dub version, and that's the obvious Sound System vibe. It starts with the obligatory Dub Siren, and the riddim just asks for an MC (or toaster if you're a bit more old-skool like yours truly). Good thing Trinity drops in and out, just often enough to deliver the message and not so much that you can't speak about a Dub track on a Dub album anymore.

The mixing style of "Light Of This Dubwise" is pretty traditional. It resembles the way a lot of dubs were mixed in the days King Tubby and Scientist were transforming the riddim tracks of Channel One, the days wherein DJ's like Dillinger and Trinity began to break through as well. By no means to be considered an attempt to sound like yesterday, this 2014 has a Trinity delivering a message as strong as "back in the days". 

5. Kojak - Prevailment Of Dub

Like Horseman says in the introduction: "Now this is the original Dub thing", and so it is. An original Dubroom riddim, written and produced especially for the crucial lyrics by -again- a legendary Jamaican Reggae MC. This one is a Dub from a full-length lyrical track that is unreleased at the time of this writing, but it surely carries enough vocal snippets to het yet another message across: Jah Love will Prevail!

The riddim is easy, but paying attention to the bass will reveal a deeper vibe than a first superficial listen might produce. Kojak's sing-jay style on top, sometimes leaving a long trail of echoes and a skank section that, well, cuts like a razor blade. It's actually a pretty meditative track, because it brings a peaceful vibe yet every now and then some effects pleasantly disturb it just enough to keep you with both feed on the ground.

6. Messian Dread - Loving Dubwise

Often, the Art of Dub is described as the "Art of Taking Away". How true that is, and how true that is for "Loving Dubwise". Before this track became a Dub, there was quite a quantity of filling instruments: several guitars, even a violin and a quartet of singers: Assante, Tallis, Ras Khaleel and UK based female vocalist Mandy Edge. A truly joyful sound, which is emphasized by the effects. Lots of stereo effects, lots of multi-layered echoes and more technical niceness coming you way!

Both the title and -sparse but effective- lyrical content deal with that thing called Love. Not the slackness kind of love, but the love that makes people stop wars and fighting each other. The kind of love that brings forth fruit in due season, the same love that Kojak described on this very same album: Jah Love. It is Jah Love, that will take you higher.

7. Prince Jazzbo - Rastafari Dubwise

Here is: Prince Jazzbo - Rastafari Dubwise, introduced by Lone Ranger.

Actually, it would be more appropriate to speak about an introduction by Lone Ranger, Jazzbo himself and the Fire Face Music Horn Section. "Rastafari Dubwise" is an easy skanker, a Rub a Dub style track that will make you move along with the drum and bass line. While the echoes go from right to left and back again, Jazzbo drops in every now and then, leaving just enough food for thought and meditation about Jah.

Whatever you may think when you hear "Jah Rastafari", truth is that Jah is the One to be feared, the Head of creation. Whatever you may think when you hear "Rastaman" truth is that a true Rastaman is that humble lion Jazzbo speaks about. Whatever you may think when you hear Dubwise, truth is that Rastafari Dubwise is another heavyweight original Dubwise selection straight from the Dubroom studio.

8. Seamus - Babylon Dubwise

Actually, this is a very special track on the album and one of the reasons is that there is hardly any knowledge about the singer that's featured on it. Still, this is one very crucial singer as you can hear in this five minutes and fifteen seconds of Dub from a full lyrical track that has at this moment still the "unreleased" status. His voice remincenses Junior Murvin (Police and Thieves) here and there, on top of "just" an overall highly impressive melodic style of singing. 

Starting of with a drum roll and riddim (skank) section soaked in echoes, at the tenth second a Dub siren enters and the drum and bass start playing. The drums (a steppers with a full blown snare) and the bass are of the solid kind, the kind that works very well in a Sound System set with an MC. The Dub is of the straight forward kind, the kind that just waits for some toasting, the kind that makes you wonder about the vocal version. 

9. U Roy - Mash Down Satan Dubwise

Of Course, Daddy U Roy himself does not need an introduction. It simply is an honor for the Dubroom to be able to legally present the founding father of (not just) Reggae MC-ing riding an original Dubroom riddim. Mash Down Satan Dubwise has more than enough lyrics to make it absolutely clear that U Roy is absolutely not intending to take it easy at his old day. He praises the Most High and chants down Babylon continually, morning noon or night. 

Producing the full lyrical track from which this Dub is taken was quite an experience as well, where his enormous experience most definitely was guiding the process even though it came in the form of recorded material. The result is a very carefully dubbed track, that sometimes remincenses King Tubby's style and at other places makes heavy use of effects that weren't around during these early years of Dubwise. This one is a Dub of Raspect.

10. Horseman and Dan Man - Robber Dubwise

This is a track for all the rude boys and hooligans. Horseman chants "Riddim", the skanks drop in and the Fire Face Music Horn Section starts to play. The drum and bass drop in, the skanks echo out and the horns get the Dub treatment. Dan Man steps in with a little singing line and when someone calls the police because of yet the next robbery, it's over for the rude boy. "Whatcha gonna do? Him hold you"

Yes, a serious thing yet the track should also be seen as a bit of a lighter one when it comes to, let's say, spiritual contents. After all, this is a track that's part of a full length Dub album, following up a rather serious and spiritual track and predecessing the next one, where the effect machine gets no rest at all. That's not to say that this one is a "filler", though. Not at all, especially not when you like your "dubbing with horns".

11. Messian Dread - Crazy But Dubwise

This is Dub! Undeniably and unmistakably Dub. This is Dub, from the top to the very last drop. Featuring Assante and US based MC Razaman being dropped into another dimension by an echo machine that tears all the frequencies apart and puts them back again in another galaxy. That's before the very same thing happens with the skanks. Things get so weird that Dillinger drops in and gives the title to this Dub. Which is then subsequently confirmed once again.

Think it's crazy? Well, yes, it is. But it is Dubwise too. And it's an obvious Messian Dread track. The Horn section (recorded in Mad Professor's Ariwa studio) plays a theme very similar to "Ethiopian Dub" (released way back then in the previous century on the debut album "One"), where the drum and bass line are pretty identifiable as well. This is a Dub produced with the love for crazy effects that every Dub Head has.

12. Lone Ranger - Rock And Come in Dubwise

To close of this twelve-track presentation of heavyweight Dubwise selections introducing an equal number of original Dubroom riddims fresh from the studio in August 2014, another legendary MC. It's amazing how the Lone Ranger, just like all these other legends featured on this album, is still strong after all these decades of really hard, hard labor in the world of Reggae Music and Sound Systems everywhere.

The Dub starts of with Don Goliath singing that well known phrase which gave the title to this track. Don't think this is a remake of anything, though. It's not. What it is, is an original "Riddim of respect" if you will. Respect to all those vocalists riding the musical productions and especially those that can and should be considered legends.

Yes, in 2014 everything looks like as if everything happened in one time. There's the mid-late 1960's U Roy became founding father of the Reggae DJ's, followed by Dennis Alcapone. Then came the 1970's, when Dillinger and Trinity became two of the leading voices in the militant Roots Reggae DJ era and Kojak & Liza was formed. Soon after that, the 1980's when Horseman started in the 1980's recording for Greensleeves Records. 

And in fact, it is.

During the introduction, Lone Ranger says: "Later, will be greater. That's what the farmer said to the potato without planting the manipulator". Now, this 2014, could be that later. We've had all kinds of manipulated potatoes in the form of hybridized forms of music taking everything but the true soul of Reggae Music and turn it into whatever it is since these 1960's when the "potato" was planted. 

One thing still stands strong: (DUB) Reggae Music with that soul of Reggae Music firmly in charge. With respect for the Most High, chanting down Babylon with her ism's and schisms. Built on a solid foundation of drum and bass, making responsible use of the freedom that the Most High wants for His children.

Yes, indeed: just a little meditation to close the first full length Messian Dread album since almost a decade.

Please do not re-publish the actual music, because unlike Dubroom releases before 2014, this release is Messian Dread/Dubroom. Available for free: 128 Kbps/320 Kbps MP3 Files, CD Quality Wave Audio. CLICK HERE for a physical CD (review) including bonus tracks, full color art work and a special license for DJ's.

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