Review: Kabaka Pyramid Releases ‘Kontraband’ Album

16 Tracks in total, ‘Kontraband,’ the debut from Kabaka Pyramid does not disappoint.

Kabaka Pyramid - Kontraband. DIGITAL RELEASE [Ghetto Youths International, Bebble Rock Records].

I only heard 3 of the songs before the album’s release so this is a fresh, new experience. The album is reminiscent of Chronixx’s “Chronology” in its diverse representation of modern reggae music.

Hip-Hop influences are evident throughout but do not detract from the roots vibe. You can choose to bob your head and/or skank to the beats. Kabaka spits bars of knowledge with a cool, collected delivery. At times, he sing-jays on the riddims in perfect melody.  

‘Kontraband’ is a strong debut for Kabaka Pyramid and it bolsters his global appeal. The Damian and Stephen Marley executive-produced album features Akon and Stonebwoy out of Africa. Jr. Gong joins Kabaka to illustrate the story on the title track.

Pressure Buss Pipes from the U.S. Virgin Islands sings the hook on “Make Way,” the opening song of the album. Fellow reggae revivalist Protoje makes his mark with a succinct verse on “Everywhere I Go.” Kabaka teams with Chronixx on the mesmerizing and memorable “Blessed Is The Man.”

Kabaka doesn’t only chant a lyrical onslaught on Babylon. He considers the divine essence of black queens on “Natural Woman.” He opens up about affairs of the heart on “Kaught Up,” and “All I Need,” which features Nattali Rize. The different vibes on ‘Kontraband’ balance out. If you ranked this entry as one of 2019’s top reggae releases, I would say that’s accurate. 

Advertisements

God Bless the Dance | Reggae Lover Podcast Episode 81

Conscious dancehall reggae music from Chronixx, Vybz Kartel, Damian “Junior Gong” Marley, Jesse Royal, I-Octane, Etana, Konshens, Jah Cure, Tarrus Riley, Capleton and more.

Enjoy a mix of songs with danceable beats and lyrics imploring listeners to stop negative behaviors.  This is feel-good music professing positivity and denouncing injustices.

This episode is an example of reggae’s power and evidence of message music continuing to come out of Jamaica in “dancehall” style. It is up to us DJs and Sound System selectors to use our influence to set a tone of consciousness by featuring better music.  We can and should influence artists and producers to clean up their act by not playing low-quality, negative music.  There is an opportunity to strengthen and edify the future generations with our music and I feel obligated to wave that flag.

STITCHER RADIO: SUBSCRIBE AND LISTEN HERE.79 - Reggae Lover Podcast - King Jammys Tribute (2nd Volume)

GOOGLE PLAY MUSIC: SUBSCRIBE AND LISTEN HERE.GOOGLE PLAY MUSIC: SUBSCRIBE AND LISTEN to reggae lover HERE.

TUNE IN RADIO: FAVORITE AND LISTEN HERE.TUNE IN RADIO: FAVORITE AND LISTEN to reggae lover HERE.

SOUNDCLOUD: CLICK TO DOWNLOAD OR PLAY EPISODE.SOUNDCLOUD: CLICK TO DOWNLOAD OR PLAY EPISODE 80

APPLE PODCAST: SUBSCRIBE AND LISTEN VIA ITUNES.APPLE Music PODCAST: SUBSCRIBE AND LISTEN to Reggae Lover VIA ITUNES.