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Breaking Babylon Curse by Messenjah Selah

Breaking Babylon Curse by Messenjah Selah

Breaking Babylon Curse by Messenjah Selah

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Chanting down Babylon in a classic roots style.

Sampler

Breaking Babylon Curse by Messenjah Selah

Billed by Zion High Productions and Lustre Kings Productions as an astonishing new voice in reggae this album from Messenjah Selah is reggae in the classic roots tradition with devotional themes around unity and brotherhood. Messenjah Selah was born Everton Clarke in St Andrew, Jamaica, before moving to the Virgin Islands and, later, the United States and this album carries the influence of some of the legendary reggae performers of these formative years. He has been recording since 1997, releasing his first album in 2003, but this is his first main label release so in that sense he is indeed a new voice.

The album is impressively produced and features a number of guest contributors, including Jah Dan, Queen Omega and Lutan Fyah. Included here is the single She Ask Me Say, produced by Nick Fantastic. Jah Dan’s guest appearance is on Humble, a track using the same rhythm track as Norris Man’s Blessing is All Yours (featured on his recent album Know the Road from the same label).

From a voice that may be new to some, this is traditional roots instrumentation in a straightforward style with a familiar musical feel. Initially this makes the tracks sound rather undemanding and similar but the album develops into something more interesting musically as it goes on. The dub-style instrumentation of Do Right and Unite stands out from the preceding songs, while the instrumentation of Two Face displays much more commitment. The dominant theme of Breaking Babylon Curse becomes clear in songs such as False Religion and Unseen Corruption while the album closes in a more tender mood with You Deserve. While this new album will not surprise it is a creditable addition to the range of contemporary releases exploring deep roots themes while paying homage to what has gone before.

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