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Stronger by Fantan Mojah

Stronger by Fantan Mojah

Stronger by Fantan Mojah

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More a collection than an album, but worth having nonetheless.


Stronger by Fantan MojahThere are albums and there are singles compilations. Raw, mournful voiced Bobo Ashanti Fantan Mojah’s second release on Greensleeves is decidedly the latter.

Most tracks on the disc have already seen the light of day in one format or another. But that’s hardly unusual in reggae. And, while a project using rhythms created by one producer yields a special degree of unity - see Tarrus Riley and Dean Fraser’s Parables and Perfect and IrieVibrations Born Dead With Life for details - albums assembled from a variety of sources - Capleton’s Reign Of Fire, Lutan Fyah’s Phantom War and more recently Busy Signal’s Loaded - can flow just fine.

Stronger isn’t really like that. Every song appears to have been selected purely for its individual strengths over any sense of cohesion between the record’s parts. What, for example, have the “day glo” synth string stabs of ballad Where Is Love in common with the 1970s invoking productions of Matt Downs? Or the clean brazen hooks of Ingo Rheinbay’s well worn Overstand rhythm with the razor sharp tenacity of Katrina Irons’ DST?

For those new to the material, however, this doesn’t matter too much. The set is packed with killer sides - the most notable of which include the “military hip hop” of Dun Dem (GT Taylor’s Laminated rhythm), the expansive and uplifting No Mercy (Lionvibes’ Everbless), Tell Lie Pon Rasta (Frenchy’s The Session) and Can’t Frame I (Special Delivery’s Judgement).

So while selectors, collectors and people who like each track to perfectly compliment the rest may be a little disappointed, Stronger is still a nice gathering of roots cuts by one of the more distinctive vocalists and lyricists around. Hit shuffle (or not) and enjoy.

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