CD Review: See-I, See-I

See-I2011, Fort Knox Recordings
www.fortknoxrecordings
; www.See-I.com

I hate using clichés, but this is a perfect occasion for this one: “greater than the sum of its parts.” The notable musical elements on display in the eponymously titled See-I aren’t unusual in the broad spectrum of reggae – dub effects, funky horns, soul and rap influences, lyrics reflecting socio-economic concerns, variations on the one-drop – but rarely have I heard them cohere in what sounds like such an inevitable, natural way. And when you add melodic hooks galore, memorable vocal performances, seamless and creative arrangements, and well-played instruments (computerized and otherwise), then you’ve got a remarkably successful album.

Given the disc’s highly sophisticated production values, with lots of manipulation in the studio, I almost expected the sheen to start shining to excess. But no, happily the album remains grounded in good vibes. Although See-I was clearly reaching for something out of the ordinary, those efforts never succumbed to a self-conscious kind of experimentation or awkwardness. So although this may be one of the most viable “future of reggae” efforts you’re likely to come across these days, just relax; there’s no grimacing required here. The listening is enjoyable throughout.

 



About Ted Boothroyd :

Ted has enjoyed music all his increasingly lengthy life. He has gone through various favorite artists along the way, from his mommy crooning lullabies at crib side to his dad singing folk songs on car trips to The Everly Brothers to Ian and Sylvia to The Dave Brubeck Quartet to The Lovin’ Spoonful to The Kinks to The Miracles to Ravi Shankar to Tchaikovsky to Pentangle to Miriam Makeba to The Red Army Chorus and Band to Captain Beefheart to Gilbert and Sullivan to The McGarrigle Sisters to The Clash to Louis Jordan to The Flying Bulger Klezmer Band to Manu Chao. He has trouble choosing favorites when it comes to reggae - that fixation has been too longstanding and too complete. Ted started writing about music late in 2002 with a book review in The Beat, continuing with book and album reviews until the magazine's untimely passing. His association with Jahworks.org dates back to 2003, and he has hosted a couple of radio shows featuring reggae and "world music". Ted also sculpts in plaster and wood. | View all posts by Ted Boothroyd

Previous postCD Review: Stephen West, Take A Rough Life Easy Next postCD Review: Lorenzo, Movin’ Ahead

What do you think?

Name required

Website

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

*


It is free

It takes less than 30 seconds. Join Us

Login

Search Jahworks.org

About the author

Ted has enjoyed music all his increasingly lengthy life. He has gone through various favorite artists along the way, from his mommy crooning lullabies at crib side to his dad singing folk songs on car trips to The Everly Brothers to Ian and Sylvia to The Dave Brubeck Quartet to The Lovin’ Spoonful to The Kinks to The Miracles to Ravi Shankar to Tchaikovsky to Pentangle to Miriam Makeba to The Red Army Chorus and Band to Captain Beefheart to Gilbert and Sullivan to The McGarrigle Sisters to The Clash to Louis Jordan to The Flying Bulger Klezmer Band to Manu Chao. He has trouble choosing favorites when it comes to reggae - that fixation has been too longstanding and too complete.

Ted started writing about music late in 2002 with a book review in The Beat, continuing with book and album reviews until the magazine's untimely passing. His association with Jahworks.org dates back to 2003, and he has hosted a couple of radio shows featuring reggae and "world music". Ted also sculpts in plaster and wood.

Categories

FREE Newsletter

JahWorks.org | P.O. Box 9207 | Berkeley, CA 94709 | U.S.A.