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Book Of Job by Richie Spice

Book Of Job by Richie Spice

Book Of Job by Richie Spice

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Another - typically - classy release.

Sampler

Richie Spice considers himself something of a throwback in the reggae business. That’s why for his fifth album he has chosen the title 'Book Of Job' because he sees his approach as being unwavering in face of music industry trends and tribulations: just as Job's faith endured great loss and pain.

Richie Spice - Book Of JobFor this reason, Spice has often linked with veteran producers. He made his first big hit Groovin My Girl with foundation artist and Abyssinians desk-man Clive “Lizzard” Hunt, who would also contribute to his career best 2007 third album 'In The Streets To Africa'. He worked with Bobby Digital for 2008's 'Gideon Boot' (again inspired by the Old Testament, the Book of Judges). Now he has used Donovan Germain of Penthouse, who steers the majority of 2011's Job.

Germain helms perhaps the biggest track of all, My Life: based on Randy Crawford’s Street Life – and not the hip hop infused cut on Ronald “Sunny Spoon” Wright’s Chemistry rhythm released in 2008. But Mr Bonner is never averse to including other producers' work on his albums. Shane Brown, one of the holy trinity of modern one droppers – along with Flava McGregor and Don Corleon – puts his synth stringsed Nylon backing to Serious Woman, which Richie describes as about “a girl who takes no bullshit from anybody”. Meanwhile Lenky Marsden supplies Yap Yap: a scathing nursery rhyme driven anti “passa passa” piece that rivals My Life for catchiest tune of the set.

Unlike previous longplayers (which tended to try to fill a disc) this one is a trim 12 tracks long. The ordering is careful: a series of songs about women – Mother Of Creation, Serious Woman and the wonderful Black Woman (on Raging Fyah's H20) – close the album’s first half.  The second half is ended with a trio of songs about God – Find Jah, Jah Never Let Us Down and Father. Sadly, there is no Got To Be Strong, his colossal duet with Samoan-American singer J Boog, for Gramps Morgan’s Dada Son production house, but maybe this will turn up on effort number 6.

'In the Streets To Africa' remains, despite its length and many different sources, his finest work. While not quite as unified and consistent as Africa, this record maintains, or even exceeds, the good standards of Gideon Boot. All in all, another - typically - classy release. 

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