Sista Lexxy & Jerry Lionz – Learning Rastafari
Guiding Star Orchestra – Upfull Melody
Tribe 84 7”
Christmas is here, woohoo, I love Christmas. For me it is two weeks off work, time at home with the family and a bit more freedom to do what I want! When you add in turkey, pigs in blankets, presents, Christmas tree, cats ripping the wrapping paper open and the traditional outing to the cinema for the latest Star Wars film, it really is my favourite two weeks of the year.
I had a little bonus this year though, as an unexpected 7” sized package arrived on the door mat the other day. It contained two promo singles from the rather lovely guys and girls at Tribe 84 Records, and a lovely note which really typified what Christmas is all about. So in the brown cardboard package (I think we all still have a little buzz of anticipation when we open these up, don’t we?) was the Sista Lexxy, Learning Rastafari single. This one I had spotted on Facebook, because being a marketing guy I do love the Pandadread branding. Also included was a new single from the Guiding Star Orchestra, a new one for me but one I am now glad to own. More about that one later.
Written and performed by Sista Lexxy with Ras Muffet’s riddim, Learning Rastafari was originally released on the Roots Injection label about thirteen years ago. Jumping ahead to 2017 the track has been given a modern day spruce up with a newly mixed riddim, bass guitar and piano tracks by original producer Jerry Lionz. Mastered by Shane in the renowned Finyl Tweek studio, the single is a very fine collaboration between Pandadread Soundsystem, Lionz Den and Tribe84 Records.
Check out the YouTube video below, which incidentally is interesting in its own right for the historical Ethiopian footage. The track itself is extremely catchy with a perfect balance of melody and bass, which I feel is always the mark of a good roots track. It also seems appropriate that at this time of year we have a track with a strong spiritual message.
Guiding Star Orchestra
Upfull Melody is the first single from a forthcoming LP by a collective of Copenhagen based musicians called the Guiding Star Orchestra. The group have an interesting philosophy on the way they record their music. Here is a snippet from the press release that explains. “The track and the album were recorded in the summer of 2016 completely without the use of digital technology. The mix was then done from multitrack 2 inch tape to ¼ tape, and the mastering from ¼ tape to ½ tape. When you record without the possibility of post-editing and cutting, you have to focus on the most important thing, which is the vibe. This has been the philosophy of the recording sessions.” I am not a music recording techy but even I can understand that the group cares about the integrity of their music and this does come across in the two tracks.
Have a listen to the SoundCloud clip below and see what you think, listen out for that cracking trombone line. The depth of bass and richness of the music doesn’t quite come across until you get that 7” on the deck, but you will get the idea. The group cite the phrase “strong positive meditation” in their notes and you can well imagine this track becoming a soundsystem favourite with its heady dub vibes. When their album arrives, if it is half as good as the single then it is going to be a big highlight of 2018.
Thank you again to Tribe 84 for sending through these extra Christmas presents, they are much appreciated. Thank you also to everyone who has read my blog over the year, I hope you all have a great time over Christmas and a very fulfilling and peaceful 2018.
Bless, Paper Lion