Dancehall

Artist: 
Wyclef Jean
Label: 
Heads Music

J’ouvert is the second EP released by Wyclef Jean. Not being a huge Wyclef fan, I really wasn’t sure what to expect going into this project.

Sounds Like: 
Young Thug
Name: 
Brandon Serrano
Date Reviewed: 
03/10/2017
Artist: 
Thievery Corporation
Label: 
ESL Music

This release is a compliation of singles from Thievery Corporation's eagerly anticipated new album, The Temple of I & I. I am mainly familiar with Thievery Corporation's live sets, so it was interesting to see how they express themselves through a studio release. The two singles heavily incoporated reggae and reggaeton themes, and upon further inspection I found out that the album was recorded in Jamaica. While I enjoyed each of the songs, the release did not quite capture the same energy and exploration that accompanies their live show.

Sounds Like: 
Beats Antique
Sounds Like: 
Tycho
Name: 
Will Fotter
Date Reviewed: 
02/11/2017
Artist: 
Popcaan
Label: 
Mixpak Records

This is a very fun and upbeat album. The beats are very synthy and compliment Popcaan's Jamaican accent nicely. I would categorize this album mostly as Dancehall given the strong Jamaican influence and digital dance beats, though you might hear some influence of hip hop, especially in tracks like Ghetto. This is definitely a "feel good" album and will most likely make you wanna dance a bit. Enjoy.

Sounds Like: 
Vybz Kartel
Sounds Like: 
Konshens
Name: 
Michael Heslinga
Date Reviewed: 
09/23/2014
Artist: 
Not Dead Yett!!
Label: 
Self-Released

I’m not particularly fond of dancehall, so maybe I’m not qualified for this review.  Keep that in mind as you read…

Sounds Like: 
Mexican Dubweiser
Name: 
Daniel Witter
Date Reviewed: 
03/04/2014
Artist: 
Major Lazer
Label: 
Mad Decent Records

Let's be real for a second, any of Diplo's projects are not only extremely well produced but create instant dance parties as soon as the play button is pressed. This track is the perfect single for the upcoming Major Lazer album. Sweet electro house beats carried through with reggae fusion elements from the vocals, drums, and even a horn section. Diplo yet again ties again dance elements from different styles of music to create one harmonious house banger.

Sounds Like: 
Dillon Francis
Name: 
Parisa Eshrati
Date Reviewed: 
04/17/2013
Artist: 
Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars ft. DJ Logic
Label: 
Cumbancha

This remixed rerelease of the All Stars' first studio album pairs the African do-gooders with DJ Logic. If you haven't heard the back story on this act it's heartwarmingly worth looking into and even has its own feature length documentary you can grab off Netflix. DJ Logic brings a somewhat higher energy vibe to the rerelease that falls a little short of club, landing somewhere around lounge. This album can be a little difficult to penetrate as it's still retains its deep African esthetic and composition, and  may not be so sweet for the uninitiated.

Sounds Like: 
Key Ingredients of African Soul, Michael Franti & Spearhead, The Very Best, Neon Prophet, Lady Smith Black Mambazo, Sizzla
Name: 
Christopher Stern
Date Reviewed: 
09/14/2011

#1

Artist: 
Digitaldubs
Label: 
Roir Music

This is the debut album from Brazilian start-up act Digitaldubs, aptly named #1. It doesn't get much more straight forward than that, and it doesn't get much more straight forward than this album. It's a very straightforward reggae and dub release with the only real twist being the Portuguese language vocals on a few tracks. Incidentally, that aspect is also one of the most intruiging on the album. Several tracks pick up the pace with a more dancehall style esthetic. Other than this the album is solid, but seriously lacks any sort of innovation of inventiveness.

Sounds Like: 
Bob Marely, Michael Franti & Spearhead, 10 Foot Ganja Plant, Sergio Mendes, Zuco 103, Neon Prophet
Name: 
Christopher Stern
Date Reviewed: 
09/14/2011
Artist: 
Buju Banton
Label: 
Gargamel Music

This is a man that needs no introduction, Buju Banton, dancehall and reggae legend from island of Jamaica. Already a well established figure in the world music scene (what with the Grammys and all), this is Banton's 9th album bringing to light the question: Which of the two camps will Banton fall into, as so many well-established musicians do? The artist who naively tries to forcefully reinvent himself in order to stay relevant or the artist that continues to do the same shtick, becoming terribly redundant, and slowly drifts into obscurity?

Sounds Like: 
Capleton, Sizzla, Luciano
Name: 
Jonathan Cohen
Date Reviewed: 
12/08/2010