Rarely, but an album manages to impress with the very first track - for example, when one of the reviewer's favorite riddims thunders out of the speakers. This is what happened with Ras Teo's new release, which uses the Roots Radics opener “Country Living” - to be found in the original as “Material Man”On Gregory Isaac's legendary“ Night Nurse ”album.
Ras Teo delivers with "Ten Thousand Lions“(A-Lone / Rebel Sounds Records) released a massive double album, which in addition to twelve vocal tracks also the corresponding Dub Versions presented and therefore traded under the name “Ras Teo meets Lone Ark”. The singer with the velvety soft voice is Angeleno of Armenian descent - which makes his sometimes deeply spiritual lyrics, which are presented in broad patois, appear in a somewhat strange light, especially since there was no corresponding ethnic connection to Jamaica. The singing itself creates mixed feelings: the man has a pleasant voice and hits the notes, but lacks energy. Anyone who expects a natural, dynamic range from quiet to loud here will be disappointed - the vocals ripple along too loud and uniform. The vocals are also highly compressed in terms of production; What can do well with polyphonic chorus leaves a stale impression with lead vocals and tires the listener in the long run. It's a shame, especially since the lack of dynamism is a general shortcoming of the otherwise successful album.
Of course, what is of particular interest here are them Dub Versions. The instrumentals, produced by Roberto Sanchez in his Spanish Lone Ark studio, have a strong relationship to the 70s, and you might think that they were recordings by the Revolutionaries from 1978. “Bad Friday Dub"," Hitey Tighty Dub"And" Babylon Crooked Dub“Are exemplary examples of this; especially Sly Dunbar's influence is unmistakable here. The backing tracks and especially the Dubs present themselves as a journey through time that couldn't be more impressive - everything is just right here: From the drums (including syndrums!) and percussions to keyboards to the excellent arranged horns, the “Lone Ark Riddim Force” apparently effortlessly has an album delivered to the master class. This is all the more remarkable since the producer recorded and mixed the lion's share of the instruments himself; only keys, percussions and horns are not from him. Roberto Sanchez shows once again that he is a profound expert on the subject, has precise ideas about the sound of his productions and obviously that Dub- Attended School of Scientist, Mad Professor, King Tubby & Co. If you like the sound of Sanchez '"Lone Ark Riddim Force", you will also find other Lone Ark productions such as Earl Sixteen's "Natty Farming"Or Earl Zero's"And God Said To Man" estimate.