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Maikal X's Genesis

Maikal X's Genesis

Maikal X's Genesis

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Big beginnings for Dutch singer.

Sampler

If one were to look at Reggae music from a global perspective and analyze it, region by region, it wouldn’t be too long at all before a special note was taken of the fact that the Dutch and Dutch Caribbean scene has been absolutely flaming as of late with big big artists seemingly popping up on a consistent basis. While the biggest of the bunch arguably remains the newly christened Ziggi Recado, there are also names such as the Aruba born Smiley and the delightful St. Maarten grown Mischu Laikah. The most recent addition to that bunch, however, is arguably the most interesting as the Holland born singer (of Guyanese and Curaçaon heritage) Maikal X has a history in Hip-Hop circles before ultimately making himself into one of the brightest newcomers in all of Reggae music over the course of the past couple of years or so.

One of the nicest bits of news surrounding Maikal X was the fact that he aligned himself with the same Rock ‘N Vibes label which successfully brought Ziggi to prominence and they’ve certainly come through in delivering one of the most anticipated debut albums of 2010, 'Genesis', which puts the talented and increasingly versatile and multi-dimensional singer on full display for the masses. Prior to the album’s releasing there was a very nice flood of singles, one such tune, the gorgeous The Best In You which arguably tops the album which it also opens. The tune grew to such heights that it was also featured on VP Records’ very popular 'Strictly The Best' compilation and has managed to carry its beauty thus far. Listeners should also be quite familiar with the most recent piece, Here She Comes (Maikal X’s excellent take on Maneater from American folk singers Hall & Oates) and also Bear With Me which utilizes the lovely Changes Riddim courtesy of Jamaican super producer Don Corleon.

Given the history of combinations on Ziggi Recado’s own albums on Rock ‘N Vibes, it should be to no surprise that the label seemingly spares no expense in lining up an outstanding trio of collaborators to work with Maikal X on 'Genesis'. First is Peetah Morgan from the Morgan Heritage who joins in on the big social commentary We Know Why, one of the album’s finest moments. Hawaiian Reggae diva Irie Love also gets a taste on the funky . . . Well the song is called Irie Love as well - A very fun and catchy vibes. And lastly there’s the biggest name on the album, Luciano, who performs as he usually does on the strong praising tune Give Thanks, which finds Maikal sounding quite a bit like Reggae legend, Freddie McGregor.

Some of the mightiest moments on 'Genesis' still come with the singer by himself and doing and developing his own vibes. A tune like Lies is a nice example. It finds Maikal X detaching himself from a bad and less than honest woman and relationship and on it he offers the single most hilarious line of the album, “Woman mi neva Chris Brown ya. Still yah try fi run a twist round ya” (in reference to the Pop singer with the problem keeping his hands to himself). While the overall quality of the album does take a dip in the latter stages, there are still very nice tunes such as the sweet Darlin and Born To Die which rides the Collie Weed Riddim from up and coming Dutch label JahSolidRock. Maikal X also saves one of his biggest shots for last as previous release and scathing social commentary, The Warning, wraps up 'Genesis'.

While it certainly does remain to be seen what level of success Maikal X can ultimate achieve in Reggae music, the levels surrounding his debut album are less in question. As a whole, it is very good. Yes - He does have a few things to work on (as does everyone else) and Yes - If this wasn’t the moment to deliver a Ziggi/Maikal X combination then when? But on 'Genesis' Maikal X proves all the attention warranted at the beginning of what is hopefully a long and distinguished career.

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