CD Review: Fyah Blaze, “Truth & Rights”

Fyah Blaze

[Eight76 Records]

Fyah Blaze in Boca Raton, FL. Photo courtesy of Eight76 Records.

Fyah Blaze in Boca Raton, FL. Photo courtesy of Eight76 Records.

“Truth and Rights” is the debut album of Kevin Morris a.k.a. Fyah Blaze, one of the most dynamic, versatile and talented young artists, I have come across in a long time. It is indeed quite unusual for a first album from a new artist, to offer such varied and uplifting sounds and styles of music. Not just music, but good music. While listening to “Truth and Rights”, I found it hard at times to believe that Fyah Blaze is really a new and upcoming artist, a mere youngster putting out his first body of work with fresh, original, and thought-provoking lyrics. Much credit goes to his talented, innovative co-writer, and experimental producer, Kenroy “YahBreeze” Archibald, (a singer in his own right) who was formerly signed to Tuff Gong Records as Cool Breeze. Archibald has taken charge through a musical blend of sounds and styles, which has resulted in this remarkable and outstanding first release, “Truth and Rights”.

From the opening track “Firm Inna Dis,” it is evident that the listener is in for a special treat. Done to the riddim of Jackie Mittoo’s classic “Darker Shade Of Black,” Fyah Blaze shows that today’s artists can still speak their minds firmly, passionately, and with all the fire, and do not have to rely on foul and offensive language. After all, Reggae artists have been making social and political commentaries for decades. His lyrics are conscious and extremely vivid – he is a great storyteller.

Like most of the 15-tracks, the title track, “Truths And Rights” is on an original riddim – Detrimental. “Nuh Love Love” is a beautiful message song done over a steady one-drop beat, and with some sweet background vocals provided by Alanna DaCosta. “Circle Of Life” features stable mate, Evette, and can easily be described as reggae-meets-soft-rock, very adult contemporary stuff here! Another outstanding crossover track is the mainstream radio geared “Empress Amazing.” This song can easily fit into any mainstream format, (if it weren’t for all the obstacles and politics, but that’s another column!) It is simply a beautiful production! On several tracks, the South Florida-based artist is joined by special guests. Richie Stephens is featured on “Are You Ready,” Carlene is on “Regular Guy,” Luciano and YahBreeze are featured on “Said And Done,” and “Music Is Life” features rapper Dallas. Do not overlook other worthy tracks like the popular “Lion Paw,” “She’s My Lover” – done to a bouncy ska beat, and “Loving Weh She Got.”

Here is another example that great Reggae music can indeed originate outside of Jamaica. All the production of “Truth and Rights” was done in Sound of All Arc Recording Studio in Miami, Florida. Talented musicians Karl Pitterson, Ian “Brezzy” Coleman, Dean Fraser, Manny Lopez, Nambo Robinson, John “Screw” Samuels, Barry O’Hare, Ludlow Marriott, Chris Meredith, Peter “Spangy” Williams, and Chris Garvey all contribute their talents to this debut CD. The harmonious background vocals are provided by Karma Faith, Evette, Alanna DaCosta, and YahBreeze. In addition, Fyah Blaze himself gives his “thank-yous” at the end of the album – a very rare inclusion, indeed. He reminds me when I first discovered Papa San and Lt. Stitchie. I could feel the power of their talent and knew they would make it – once given the opportunity. I am feeling the same excitement with Fyah Blaze. And you will certainly feel it too. Get a copy of “Truth and Rights,” and experience the awesomely raw power of this gifted young artist. It is comforting to know that the future generation will have artists like Fyah Blaze among its ranks.

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