A Thomas - Morgen & Doe Ne Keer Zot (Self-published)

Malinois Thomas Alberico aka A Thomas has there not the kind to sit still for long and in the six months prior to this new double album appeared not less than two reggae albums ('Ik Heb Je Lief ', an ode to love, and 'I Am The One') and as many hip-hop releases ('Short Stories' and 'Stranger')!

'Morgen', the first disc is filled with 10 Dutch reggae tracks for which he used recent riddims like One World ('Morgen'), Kingston 16 ('Iedereen Zou') or Rough Road ('Ik Weiger'). The only exception is 'Allemaal' for which A Thomas revisited Horace Andy's 'Skylarking'. 'Morgen' also features two guests: ex-Wahwahsda Sput in opener 'Staat Op' (Breakwater riddim), a song about being happy with what you've got and chasing your dreams, and Miss Drijf, Thomas' girlfriend, who in 'Soms' (Get Yuttah riddim) verbally declares herself to be her consort's shoulder to lean on. For the slightly older generation there's a slightly melancholic nod in 'Morgen', in which A Thomas declares himself a fan of De Fabeltjeskrant singing: "...oogjes dicht en snaveltjes toe…". 'Ik Weiger' is a razor-sharp antifascist statement, with as an intro an audio excerpt in which Prime Minister Charles Michel condemns Vlaams Belang leader Filip Dewinter for his meeting with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, and 'Allemaal' is almost the antipode, as it's a song in which Thomas declares that we're are equal and that, compared to the rest of the world, things aren't all that bad in Belgium.

On 'Doe Ne Keer Zot', A Thomas does the same over dancehall riddims like Mighty Diamond League (opener and title track 'Doe Ne Keer Zot'), Dark Emotions ('Ik Zei Het U Toch') or Gold Finga ('Wa Ge Ook Zegt'), but we've never been fans of the genre so won't pronounce ourselves on the quality of those compositions.

Alberico suffers from bipolar disorder, and in his lyrics he often refers to his condition: "Ik kan misschien niet werken, maar ik zit niet stil..." from 'Staat Op', "…ik zweer tegen volgende week is het veel beter, hand in hand en meter voor meter…" from 'Morgen', "Van uw hoofd tot uw tenen, armen en benen, al de hoop voor de toekomst verdwenen…" from 'Soms', or "Ik kan niet meer, nee ik wil niet meer, ben geen fan meer van mijn spiegelbeeld…" from 'Ik Kan Niet Meer'.

From introspective over socially-critical to light-footed, busybody A Thomas does it all and by the time we will have published this review, he'll probably already be at work on his next production!


Added: Mar 31, 2017