You'll find a cornucopia of tasty tunes to bounce off your eardrums. I update with new tunes, art and photography every week, depending on what I'm doing and listening to at the time, old and new. I'm based in London UK but I love to travel and discovery new music along the way and share my musical journey on neoloop.
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Stoner lounge guru George Evelyn's Nightmares On Wax return with album number seven, Feelin' Good. All the usual hall marks of the Nightmares On Wax sound are there, funk driven groovers and soulful balearic chill-outs as well as the reggae tinged low-slung jams.
Opening with the lush strings of So Here We Are, a slowly chilled-out tune to ease us into the opulent orchestral sound. Be, I Do bounces along on a catchy skanking baseline evoking the visions of hotter climates. This tune, Now Is The Time is bubbling hot with a piano riff skipping through a looping ska-fused drum and bass. Moses from Zero 7 pops-up on the gospel-pop of Give Thx, the orchestral dynamics continue on the delightful Master Plan. Eye (Can't See) and Tapestry brings the funk with lashings of the feel good factor. It all end with Om Sweet H(Om)e a balearic meditation state that washes over the senses and transcends your mind into utopia, probably the Wax's sweetest chill-out track since Carboot Soul. Recommended.
London dubstep producer Mala travelled to Havana to collaborate with traditional Cuban musicians under the guidance of world renowned music mastermind Gilles Peterson. Buena Vista Social Club goes dubstep you may think, but this album climbs new heights to deliver a truly original piece of music. This is far removed from the early trappings of dubstep, this is cuban music with earth-moving low frequency basslines. An organic feel throughout never sounds forced, instead shifting and moulding into a free flowing rhythm of epic soundscapes and alt-jazz nuances.
Noches Sueños, the closing track really taps into the spirit of Cuban music, but it's like nothing else on the album. Guest vocalist Danay Suarez sings a Spanish lament over a powerful slow reggae bass, you can feel the melancholy longing at the core of both much traditional Cuban music and early dubstep. Stunning. Recommended.
Snoop Dogg has been renamed Snoop Lion for his debut reggae album. This is first tune to materialise today from forthcoming LP Reincarnation. La La La produced by Major Lazer and features guest vocals by Jovi Rockwell. Snoop and Diplo borrow heavily from old school rock steady tune Artie Bella, from Ken Boothe and Stranger Cole’s circa 1960′s version. Last heard on Major Lazer's Lazerproof the mash-up of La Roux's debut LP. Snoop's no Ken booth, but with Diplo's dancehall posse Major Lazer behind him it's defo a winner.
My mate Dave found a copy of Tighten Up Vol. 1 & 2 this week down the back of an old cuboard, some seriously classic reggae on these milestone LP's. Originally released in 1969 by Trojan Records.
This track by Dandy (Dandy Livingstone) is on the Tighten Up Volume 2. Reggae In Your Jeggae is a top tune, been listening to this loads. Other classics on here include The Upsetters' Return Of Django and Live Injection, The Pioneers' Longshot Kick De Bucket, Clancy Eccles' Fire Corner and of course Lee Scratch Perry's Tighten Up.
A Major Force
Major Lazer played Live at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire this week, it was a mental gig, Toddla T got the crowd nicely warmed-up with a few special guest including the delightful Shola Ama who stole the set. You might need somebody, Taboo and Take it back all sounding good with Toddla's beats. Major Lazor take the stage and dancehall mayhem erupts for the next hour and half. Hold the Line was a special moment, Diplo mixed up the unique Major Lazer sound with classic reggae and calypso, the highlight for me was Harry Belafonte's Day-O mashed with the epic Pon de Floor, the whole of the empire went absolutely mental.
Also out this week is a new tune from Major Lazers forthcoming album due in 2 months time. Given away as a free download in exchange for your email here. Get Free features the lush vocals of Amber Coffman of the Dirty Projectors and sounds amazing, I've been playing it on repeat for the last few days. LOVE IT!
Look out for Major Lazer's forthcoming Dancehall album with Snoop Dogg too!
Some nice late night dub for you, this bounces along with the sweetest beat. Loving the Liquid Stranger - obliterates the boundaries separating dubstep, grime, dub, breaks, hip hop and outernational crunkadelica. No less!
Bombaclaad Star appears on the new Liquid Stranger album The Arcane Terrain. You can get the full album over on band camp here.
Major Lazer gives The Beastie Boys a dancehall make-over with the usual quality results. In a combination that includes 3 Neoloop favourites The Beastie Boys, Sanigold and Major Lazer.
Lazer's pounding drums gives the track a new lease of life, and the original is already a major highlight from The Beasties latest long player, Hot Sauce Committee Part 2. Get your dancehall on and groove to this banger.
What a tune this is, an old favourite and a bona fide classic Boops! A great tune from the legendary Sly and Robbie one of reggae's most prolific and long lasting production teams. The rhythm section of drummer Lowell Dunbar and bass guitarist Robert Shakespeare started working together in the mid 1970s. This was a number 12 hit on the UK Singles Chart in 1987. Boops (Here to Go) features Bootsy Collins and vocals from Shinehead, it still sounds fresh today and appears on Sly and Robbie's 1987 album Rhythum Killers, which also includes a great version of the Ohio Players hit Fire. Love it!
The prolific and influential Lee Scratch Perry has some new material floating about. The upsetter releases new LP Rise Again on 10th May, a long-awaited collaboration with New York-based producer Bill Laswell. This tune features vocals from TV On The Radio's Tunde Adebimpe, a polished production, but Perry brings everything down to earth with his eccentric stylings. An absolute legend, now the grand old age of 75.
The diverse line-up joining the king of ad-lib on this new LP includes vocalists Tunde Adebimpe, Gigi Shibabaw (whose Mesgana Ethiopia was released last year) and Hawkman (Method Of Defiance); P-Funk legend Bernie Worrell (keyboards); Peter Apfelbaum (tenor sax & flute); Steven Bernstein (trumpet); Josh Werner (bass); and Hamid Drake (drums).
Says Laswell, “It's a real production, and really conscious of bringing out Lee Perry. It's his presence that keeps this thing moving. Is the whole idea crazy? That's part of what makes it worth doing."
Today is Bob Marley's birthday, he would have been 66. So what better excuse to feature an old Bob favourite, this is a classic. Mr. Brown was recorded in 1970 at Randy's recording studio in Kingston, it was produced by legendary Lee scratch Perry and written by regular Upsetter musician Glen Adams. It was originally released as a single in Jamaica and was included on the 1971 album Soul Revolution.
The theme of the song relates to a rumour that was spreading through Jamaica that a duppy, or ghost, had been spotted in numerous locations speeding through the land on a three wheeled coffin, perched upon which were three John Crows, or buzzards, one of which could talk and was asking for a Mr. Brown. Glen Adams wrote the lyrics after hearing the story, and after Lee Perry's suggestion, was sung by The Wailers. There are other suggestions that the song could be about drugs, particularly Heroin ("Brown" slang for Heroin). Nevertheless it remains a classic Bob Marley tune.
A slice of Reggae and massive dollop of Soul with the beautiful voice of Hindi Zahra. Late night chilled grooves cooked up to perfection. This track is taken off the debut album from Parisian Radio show programmer Blundetto! called Bad Bad Things.
Insane in the Membrane, insane in da brain!
This tune just makes me smile and sticks in your head all day soon as you hear it. London-based Mike Pelanconi's Prince Fatty band turns in a cracking cover of the legendary Cypress Hill's Insane in the Brain. Taken from Fatty's second album for Mr.Bongo - Super Size. It also contains the cover of another rap classic Ol' Dirty Bastard's Shimmy Shimmy Ya. The new album features vocals from other Reggae heavyweights Little Roy, Dennis Alcapone, Natty and Winston Francis and was recorded on vintage analogue equipment to preserve the signature sound of reggae and dub records. While the album isn't particularly ground-breaking, that's not a bad thing - it's just a lot of fun with a feel-good vibe.
Pink Floyd's introspective prog masterpiece Dark Side of the Moon as a dub reggae album on 2003's Dub Side of the Moon was genius. Easy Star All-Stars have now commissioned a remix album to give a different spin on their dub versions. Each track features a unique dub producer exploring spaced-out reggae and bass-heavy remixes of the original Dub Side of the Moon, Can it get any dubber? Hell yeah - Dubber side of the Moon is another triumph, some remixes work better than others Mad Professor, Scientist, Adrian Sherwood and Jazzwad, and Alchemist turning in best reworks. This Dubmatix remix of Speak to Me/Breathe gets my vote as the cream of the crop, speeding it up and making the bass even heavier. This is superb - Turn up the bass bins!
Like this/ Try: Dubmatix, Lee Scratch Perry, King Tubby
New EP my heart beats: remixes and versions is a collection of remixes from Natural Self's My Heart Beats Like A Drum LP. Prince Fatty, puts stand-out track Midnight Sun through his mixing deck, drafting in his crew of veteran players to turn out a brand new piece of music, keeping the sultry vocal talents of French singer Elodie Rama who co-wrote and sings on the original version. Also available in a full dub version which wicked too. Pure hot hip-swaying vibes for a sunny day, just add clear blue skies and a Rum and Coka!
As well as Natural Self, Elodie Rama has also made some great music with Hocus Pocus and Blue Apple Quartet. Prince Fatty does a great version of Snoop Dogs Gin and Juice listen on his MySpace here.
Banging new dance hall EP from Major Lazer (a.k.a. American producer Diplo and British producer Switch) featuring brand new songs and remixes of tracks from the original 2009 release, Guns Don’t Kill People…Lazers Do. Even Thom Yorke contribute's a remix of Jump up. But I'm really feeling this track, K.L.A.M. remix of Can't Stop Now. Wack the bass up!
Loving this new mash up of La Roux by Major Lazor (as recommended by @ablackcanvas) specially this track, giving it a real skanking. There is a complete album's worth of remakes available on the Mad Decent website, download the whole mixtape for free - Lazorproof.
The Major Lazer braintrust (Diplo & Switch) put this mixtape together for La Roux while working on new material in Jamaica. It features a bunch of JA-inspired blends, special remixes, dubplates and more, it's all crazy shit! Recommended!
Unmistakably Quantic but with an emphasis on reggae inspired sounds this is from the constantly evolving series of ideas from the unstoppable Will Holland. Released back in 2008, a timeless sound that borrows from the past to create the future. This has such nice cool groove, Death Of The Revolution is looped through the track to give it a dark undertone with sunshine high-lights it's a wicked tune. Taken from the album Quantic Presents… Flowering Inferno.
Like This? try: The Quantic Soul Orchestra, Quantic & His Combo Barbaro, Ticklah Vs. Axelrod, Mr Scruff
Some late night chilled out reggae for you now, I've been listening to some out mixes and this tune come on, I'd forgotten how good it was. The original White Stripes version is a killer tune to begin with of course, The Dynamics slow the whole thing down and change the arrangement to give it a nice easy reggae drum and bass with melodica that Augustus Pablo would be proud of. Seven Nation Army is from The Dynamics 2008 covers album Version Excursions. The band are from Lyon in France.
Like This? Try: Easy Star All-Stars, Ticklah Vs Axelrod, DubXanne
Marvin Gaye never sounded so good, this is a cheeky mash-up from Al Fingers of Marvin's classic tune with the old reggae standard, Johnny Osbourne's Truth and Rights. As the sun is starting to shine at the end of a long hard winter, we need some feel good vibes to soak up the rays and warm your soul. A magic combination that works so well, many will say it's a sacrilege to mess with the great soul master, but hey if it sounds this good who gives a shit. Go to Al Fingers website for some more excellent mash-ups and mixtapes here.
Like This? Try: More Marin Gaye, Johnny Osbourne, Burning Spear, The Heptones, The Mighty Diamonds
In the mood for some Dark dancehall? Look no further than Diplo and Jayou's remix of The Partysquad's Murderer, and it's murder on the dance floor! After a few listen's this really sucks into your head, the skanking guitars and booming dub beat pound on relentlessly before an light skanking interlude interrupts and sends the whole track into space via a badass an echo chamber. The Partysquad are positively massive in their home country of the Netherlands. Murderer freaks out the Barrington Levy track of the same name. I'm loving' it!
Superb skanking tune, from Guts new album Freedom.
Turn up your bass bins, if they can handle it!
If your in the mood for some original chilled out reggae, take this for a spin. A reggae re-interpretations of an Eddie Palmieri salsa classic. Cool Cuban cha cha cha backed up with a skanking dub riddim and brass from babylon. Rich vocals from Mayra Vega singing like her life depended on it. Plus a superb piano solo in the middle.
Brooklyn's Ticklah is a founding member of the excellent Easy Star All-Stars, with whom he co-produced Dub Side of the Moon; he played keyboards on that release and contributed to its follow up, Radiodread. This track is taken from his 2007 album Ticklah Vs Axelrod.
I read the news today oh boy!
I think some Beatles tunes you just can't fuck with, and A Day In The Life is one of them. But my main man Big Twix (@bigtwix) played this and I loved it, something about Reggae that makes you get away with it. As Big Twix sez 'you can hear the love when they made this'. The whole album is a reggae version of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Dub Band by the same lot that done the dub side of the moon and Radiodread, featuring many top draw reggae artists.
Return From The Planet DUB!
The Dub master that is Lee Scratch Perry returns with a new album collaborating with Vienna dub pioneers Dubblestandart. This a cover of the old Max Romeo track Chase the Devil, as covered and sampled by many artists over the years. Everything Lee Scratch Perry touches turns to gold, the master old the golden age of Reggae. Stick your headphones on, spark up a fat one and lose yourself in dub.
For maximum listening pleasure just add clear blue skies, hot Caribbean sunshine, white sandy beach and a large Rum and coke.
Makes you hungry listening to this tune. With some serious old organ and skanking bass this is vintage reggae but it was made last year. Calypso Rose knows her stuff though, she been singing over 30 years and written over 800 songs.
MMmmmm Shrimp and rice anyone?
Calypso Rose (born April 27, 1940 in Bethel, Tobago) is a Tobagonian calypsonian.
It's a pity it's raining in July, maybe if we just play a good reggae tune the sun will come out!
Tanya Stephens (born July 2, 1973 in Kingston, Jamaica) is one of the most influential Reggae artists that emerged in the late 1990s. Stephens is most known for her hits "Yuh Nuh Ready Fi Dis Yet" — the single was later featured on the Reggae Gold 1997 compilation album — and "It's a Pity", which achieved Tanya international recognition as a one of a kind artist.
Lazer guided Killa riddims and baselines from Babylon!
Guns Don't Kill People... Lazers Do, the new album from Major Lazer is just gonna blow up, buy it, beg for it, steal it... A massive contender for album of the year. Electro squelches, sirens and Nokia ringtones sprinkled over Basslines booming with intensity and distortion, digital dancehall for the future, but the future is already here! Bags of special select guests make it an eclectic affair.
Major Lazer is a Jamaican commando who fought in the “secret Zombie War of 1984” and lost both arms in combat. Then the U.S. military equipped him with experimental lasers that double as prosthetic limbs. That's the pitch, but it's really Diplo and Switch!
SKA for a sunny day... The legendary Prince Buster! - Original SKA from 1967
A true pioneer of the Ska sound, Cecil Bustamente Campbell, O.D. (born May 28, 1938), better known as Prince Buster and less known by his muslim name Muhammed Yusef Ali, is a musician from Kingston, Jamaica and regarded as one of the most important figures in the history of ska and rocksteady music. The records he made on the Blue Beat label in the 1960s inspired many reggae and ska artists. Prince Buster had two hit singles in the UK. "Al Capone" (#18, 1967) and with an updated version of "Whine And Grine"
This track was covered by The Specials, adding their own lyrics.
Buy it - Amazon
Infectious groove, can't fail to get your foot tapping this one!
Terry Hall is enjoying Rave reviews touring with the Specials at the moment, I was lucky enough to see them at Brixton Academy last month, definitely gig of the year for me! This tune is currently on the cover mount CD with Uncut magazine this month and it reminded me how good it was and what a great album it comes from.
On this tune Hall's voice is joined by Romany Rad, a group of Polish gypsy refugees living in the East End, the blind Algerian rapper Mohammed and Damon Albarn. The album is also on Albarns record label Honest Jons.
Buy it - honestjons.com