Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Brother Culture - Isis

Reggae MC Brother Culture has been around for a long time, since the early 80's in fact, when he was a mic man with Jah Revelation Muzik, a south London based sound system. But I first heard of him just a few years ago when he had an excellent 10" released on the Dubhead label with Mungos Hi-Fi entitled "Ing" which used some very clever wordplay over a heavy digital roots rhythm.

This release sees Brother Culture hook up with longtine producer Nick "Manasseh" Raphael who, along with Brother Culture have put together one fine album. In fact it's the production and the variety of rhythms that swing it for me. Solid productions throughout, from the ska-flavoured opening track "The Rider" to the roots orientated "Darker Side Of Town" (also available on 7" on the Roots Garden label) and "If There Were Gods" to dancehall flavours like "How Wi Roll" and "Turn It Around". There are also occasional hints of Hip Hop, some Indian percussion and to top it off some subtle acoustic guitar, melodica and tasteful flute playing which lends the set an organic feel.

For the most Brother Culture's delivery is spot on and very clear when either singing or MCing and does not venture too far into patois, giving his music more widespread appeal. In this respect I could compare him to Macka B who is very popular throughout the world partly for this reason. "Isis" is a worthy set which I heartily recommend. Special mention must go again to Nick Manasseh one of the most creative reggae producers and remixers in the UK right now. No doubt, I will write more about him in the future.

You can listen to sound clips from the album here.

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