Reg­gae

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Tony Hil­lier

Rebel Fre­quency Nat­tali Rize Root­fire/MGM De­spite a name change, the voice of Blue King Brown’s Nat­tali Rize stays res­o­lutely aligned with reg­gae ver­nac­u­lar and so­cially con­scious ver­biage, couched in a com­bi­na­tion of back­beat, rock riffs and pop hooks. While her ser­mons might well strike a chord in th­ese times of po­lit­i­cal dis­en­chant­ment, some may find wor­thy mes­sages ad­vo­cat­ing pos­i­tive so­ci­etal change rep­e­ti­tious and overzeal­ous. Her use of reg­gae pa­tois might ir­ri­tate non-ini­ti­ates. The open­ing dub-drenched, dance hall-styled ti­tle track sets the tone on Rize’s de­but solo al­bum: “So when you think this world can be ruff, you’ve had enough and you nah go take any more, well now the mis­sion is re­sis­tance so we can get new ex­is­tence”. War­riors, Evo­lu­tion­ary and Heart of a Lion main­tain the rage with lines such as “You’re gonna see we riz­ing, we nah go run nor hide”, “Rev­o­lu­tion is the evo­lu­tion of our con­scious­ness and minds” and “Trou­ble in the jun­gle, they take it to the streets / See them comin’ one by one, rev­o­lu­tion at their feet”. Even the more mel­liflu­ous, acous­tic-ori­ented One Peo­ple adopts an ac­cusatory stance: “Your civil­ians are like slaves locked in servi­tude and the only way you keep them is to keep them from the truth while your in­sti­tu­tions in­doc­tri­nate the youth”. A rock­steady duet with Ju­lian Mar­ley ( Natty Rides Again) and a mawk­ish love song fea­tur­ing Ja­maican band Raging Fyah ( Fly Away) of­fer a softer side. Med­i­ta­tion skirts closer in style to 1970s Bob Mar­ley.

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