This is Garrison Hawk outta Noo York's return to dancehall and as it's recorded at Wackys you know Hawkman means business.
Garrison is one of Tricky's collaborators and has also worked with Roger Sanchez and Armand Van Helden. I don't review loads of reggae so sorry if most of my references are strictly old school.
This for me is a classic Monday afternoon curveball reggae album. As such I'm dedicating this to my old spar Bill aka Mr Belafonte who used to come round on a Monday afternoon to listen to tunes and educate me in reggae history and his times as a Dj on Radio London in the late 60's and hanging on the front line in the 70's. I last saw Bill back when he was 78 and about to move into a nursing home up until then he was still a proper rude boy. We'd sit and listen to lots of the tunes I have and every now and then I'd throw in something modern or he'd bring round the latest Thriller U for us to dig deep into. This would have gone down nicely with Bill!!
The album for me opens with the disappointing Party Time as I was hoping for a Jazz Butcher cover (Only joking a little bit here) it also has more Auto tune than I like to hear, but as this isn't being made for old school Reggae heads like me, it probably means this will be the dancehall smash from the album. I really like the deep vocal bits that sound a bit like Junior Delgado.
Wine Pan A Ting has a far more dancehall feel to it that harks back to the first Reggae star I ever met Yellowman. The twin vocals are chatting like Spars about a fine woman or two.
Good Girls Love Bad Guys is all about what the bass is doing as they toast in a dancehall style with a flow that sounds like Dillinger rinsed through with Cocoa Tea.
Dream For Life in places sounds like early Buccaneer as they wine and grine through the life lessons they hope we can learn this very chilled and hopeful tune that I'd love to hear on a big system at carnival as it sounds perfect to get a big crowd going too.
Love In A Mi Heart (Can't Tear We Apart) I could happily stick my head in the bass bins for this one as it hits down in your feet the squelchy dubby bass as the lovers tune to get up close and writhe together as one as it gets going.
Humanity (Solidarity) is conscious raising roots anthem, telling us the same message as it's always been, for the downtrodden and beaten down. Militant sounds for militant times that we always seem to be in. This sounds and should be a huge tune.
Dem Want To Avenger Me is like one of those Dillinger tunes about guns and drugs and general badness a riddim monster.
Draw Mi Out sounds like a carnival classic to me, a perfect tune to get the dancehall moving and singing along too, a proper party tune, the strings and keyboard rhythm really gets to it.
Fear Or Threat is a street fighting brawl of a tale of badness and the life of crime and need of a better way of living. Turn On Twist is almost a boyband style poppy and sugary love song a bit of a sweet sweet lovers tune to get nicey nicey too. Loads of swirly strings over the riddim track.
Pretty Pussycat dancehall booty shaking time when that sound hits and the riddim flows as they chant about that Pretty Pussycat whose shaking across the room with them this sounds like the tunes they play on Powis Square at carnival that get massive reactions. This is a tune to drop!
Gal Have Wants (Featuring Beenie Man) keeps the carnival street dancehall feel going as we all play guess where they stole this bit from next, great Alcapone steal for the sort of song that makes a street dance in time to them over a riddim that's been on dozens of tunes and some great old school dub effects.
Draw Mi Out (Bad Man Want To Reason) (Jamaica Cut) is a slightly heavier cut that the version cut this is the later at night version the stripping back to the main chorus and riddim gives it more impact. That chorus has been stuck in my head a lot since first hearing the album.
This album makes me want to dig out some Wackies 12"s and sit down for a session find out more at