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Tony Roots: Rejoice

Tony Roots: Rejoice

Tony Roots: Rejoice

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Reggae in a classic style with some fine riddims from Roots Hitek.


From the production powerhouse of Roots Hitek comes this latest release by Tony Roots. Based in the UK reggae tradition, Tony Roots (Anthony Stultz) has been releasing his own brand of mainstream reggae since the 1990s, founded on a solid track record of touring throughout Europe and a feel for the enduring strength of reggae in a roots style. This new collection of sixteen tracks opens with a short vocal introduction and then goes straight into the upbeat sentiments of Thanksgiving, reprising the words of the previous track in a straight-ahead style. Then it’s into Peace and Love. Again this is optimistic old-school reggae music in the classic style, with Love of Jah adding more in the same tradition. This is fine for anyone who was brought up under the influence of Marley, Steel Pulse and the greats from that era but with the obvious danger that little of interest is being added.

But the album gets more interesting as it develops, with Put It Dung offering a more adventurous and contemporary instrumentation and some urban lyrical themes, while a track like Show Love has a strong rhythm track underneath and repays a few hearings. It then becomes clear that some of the rhythms are worth listening to in their own right, for instance on Guide Us and the driving bass sound that propels Sabbath Meditation along its way. Theocratic Solution deserves a mention for its rhythm and pace, as well as for the kind of title you don’t come across every day.

This collection from Tony Roots has fine vocals and sharp production throughout. If you are looking for new music drawing directly from the mood and spirit of the mainstream reggae tradition, it will not surprise but neither will it disappoint.

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