Manudigital - Bass Attack (X-Ray Production)
Yours truly had already heard nothing but good things about French producer and beat maker Manudigital, but 'Digital Pixel', his debut album from 2016 had eluded us and we hadn't had the opportunity to see him play live either. The release of his brand new 'Bass Attack' album therefor seemed the ideal opportunity to get to know this French phenomenon.
Harouna Samake - Kamale Blues (One World Records)
Harouna Samake is a Malian kamale ngoni player from Dissan near Sikasso, a town in the far south of the country.
Pablo Raster - Fairytales In Dub (ODG)
As the title suggests, for this album, the Polish based Italian producer Pablo Raster drew inspiration from well-known and lesser known fairy tales and fables.
Bixiga 70 - Quebra-Cabeça (Glitterbeat Records)
With album title 'Quebra-Cabeça', their second long player on the Glitterbeat Records label, the Brazilian afrobeat combo Bixiga 70 delves deeper into the stratification of their music, which is like a puzzle of various influences.
Brother Culture - Code Name (Evidence Music)
Veteran MC Brother Culture and Swiss producer team Evidence Music (Etienne Maitre and Nicolas Maitre from Derrick Sound, and Nicolas Meury from Little Lion Sound) got to know each other in 2013 and their collaborations have already resulted in a number of successful singles like 'Dreadlocks Thing', 'Heal Them' and 'New Generation'. Those singles were now bundled together with a series of new tracks for 'Code Name', an album tailored to the current sound system generation.
Alpha Steppa & Nai-Jah - The Great Elephant (Steppas Records)
As a successor to '3rd Kingdom', English producer Alpha Steppa opted to collaborate with French-Nigerian singer-songwriter Nai-Jah.
Groundation - The Next Generation (Baco Records)
After three years of absence, during which the individual band members were involved in all kinds of side projects, Groundation is finally returns! But as the album title indicates 'The Next Generation', this is a completely new version of the band. Apart from front man Harrison Stafford there isn't a trace of the rest of the old Groundation anymore.
Gonzo & Inna Vision - Curricular Style (Roots Musician Records)
For 'Curricular Style' Gonzo and Inna Vision joined forces, but that collaboration didn't result in an entirely new album, as with 'Bad Girl' and 'Show You Love' the track list also includes two tracks from Gonzo's 2017 'Round The Clock' EP, 'So High' already featured on Inna Vision's recent 'Link Up' album, 'Roots It Up' is a song from 'Red', Gonzo's solo 2014 solo debut, and 'Change The World' is a cover of the eponymous 1996 song by Eric Clapton.
Various Artists - King Jammy presents Dennis Brown: Tracks Of Life (Greensleeves)
Almost 20 years after his demise, Dennis Brown remains an inexhaustible source of inspiration in the reggae genre. In 2016 VP Records already presented 'We Remember Dennis Brown', a double album full of Dennis Brown covers, and for 'Tracks Of Life', King Jammy also had a whole range of artists get creative with some of D-Brown's greatest classics.
Matumbi - Dub Planet Orbit 1 (Dub Store Records)
For their latest re-release, Japanese Dub Store Records turned their attention to 'Dub Planet Orbit 1', a lesser known album by British band Matumbi that was released in 1980 on their own Extinguish Records label.
Ital Foundation - Ital Foundation Vol. 1 (Jamwax)
The reggae scene is filled with so-called connoisseurs, who when you tell them about the most obscure reggae record ever made, will still claim that they've known it for years and even got the original version in their collection somewhere. Yours truly doesn't fit that category, but gladly so, as discovering "new" tunes and artists is still half the fun for a real music fanatic.
Gregor Terror & The Calypso Gigolos - Le Chant De Gregor Terror & The Calypso Gigolos (Kaiso Records)
'Le Chant De Gregor Terror & The Calypso Gigolos' is the long player debut of Gregor Terror & The Calypso Gigolos.
Estelle - Lovers Rock (Established 1980 Records/VP Records)
To be honest, the name Estelle didn't ring any bells with yours truly, but in the r&b scene, the British singer of Senegalese-Grenadian descent has been a familiar face since 2008's 'Shine' was released on John Legend's Homeschool label and she then went on to win a Grammy for world hit 'American Boy', a duet with Kanye West.
Stella Chiweshe - Kasahwa: Early Recordings (Glitterbeat Records)
The fact Stella Chiweshe would become the grande dame of Zimbabwean mbira music was certainly not written in the stars.
The Drop - Last Stand (Shoal Records)
After a few years of hard work and extensive touring, The Drop, the band around vocalist Daniel 'Dandelion' Collier (Hempolics) and guitarist Leon King, finally releases 'Last Stand', their more than convincing debut effort.
Various Artists - Open Arms Project: Reggae Can Help!!! (Self-published)
Since the right-wing government of Matteo Salvini took office in Italy, the constant stream of crowded rickety boats full of African migrants has partly shifted from the Italian coasts to the southern Spanish Costas; a fact not escaping Madrid based jack-of-all-trades and founder of Spanish reggae band Cañaman, Ras Kuko.
Afro-Cuban All Stars - A Todo Cuba Le Gusta (World Circuit)
The vinyl re-release of 'Cachaito' hasn't cooled down yet, but World Circuit isn't relenting and already returns with a deluxe vinyl release of 'A Todo Cuba Le Gusta', back in 1996 the debut album by Afro-Cuban All Stars.
FoOlish - Table For Four (Where's The One Records)
In recent years we've seen an almost continuous stream of reggae releases from the United States, but in Canada things remained rather quiet. However, with 'Table For Four', Montreal based band FoOlish, is intent on changing this.
The Dubwegians - South Of The River Clyde EP (Dub-O-Phonic)
With The Dubwegians' 'South Of The River Clyde', Dub-O-Phonic is re-releasing an EP by the Scottish duo Gary Lamont and Richy Clark, which originally saw the light back in 2011, but unjustly suffered from a lack of attention.
Skarbone 14 - On Partage Un Temps (Self-published)
Tournai based band Skarbone 14 has been around since 2001 and with their solid mix of ska and punk with influences from klezmer, funk, hip-hop and more, in recent years have set many a festival stage ablaze.