Music review by Selecta Sebo

LB27 -Color Dem (riddim compilation, 2009, Ladánybene 27)

Short introduction to Hungarian reggae history: The first ever Hungarian reggae band is called Ladánybene 27 aka. LB27, they released their first album mid 1980s, and they were the only ones to have released material untill the mid ’90ies. Anyway the band helped the country’s reggae scene and tried to empower other bands and musician to step onto stages and deliver their own concept of Jamaican based music. The first ever riddim showcase album has proven that Hungarian singers and musicians can reach outernational success as well. The riddim was built over and give respects to Gregory Isaacs „Night Nurse“ as some patterns can be overheard. The album opens the producers’ title track (LB27) and on that tune featuring artist is Yellowman.

 

All the famous singjays/deejays of the time ride di riddim just name a few: Lord Panamo aka. KRSA (PASO), G-Ras (Riddim Colony), Columbo, MC Kemon (Irie Maffia). The cd contains an other section (startin at track 5) where upcoming, or not so famous singers had the oppurtinity to voice over the riddim, and sometimes they even made a better version of the tune than the so called professionals. Céanne (Szélinger Anna) with her song called Rootless Tree became the all time favorite among the massive and whole scene including selectors/soundmen.

Knotty Headz - Forgotten Roots (2007, self-published)

The first Hungarian reggae band in history is LB27 (Ladánybene 27), that’s a fact. No one can take away that title, but as a reggae journalist and selector I have to admit the best Hungarian reggae band was a short-lived phenomenon, and founded by teenagers in mid 2000s. Knotty Headz stepped on the stage first in 2007 on a talent show in the sunny, rural city called Pécs. As I first heard them I could not find from where that rough voiced lyrics delivery came as I can’t see any  male lead singer, and I was sure that voice is not belonging to the beautiful backing singer-girls in the front. I had to investigate the mystery so I walked around the stage when I recognised that the lead vocal came behind the drumskins, as the drummer and the lead singer is the same person. Anyway  after that show I helped the band where I could, we had plenty different shows, my sound (Afro-Soul Sound) played regularly as entry act before Knotty Headz. The nine-member band recorded their one and only album in 2008, called Forgotten Roots. The title refers that reggae music at the time have forgotten their roots and relation to „hardcore conscious reggae“ at least in Hungary. And then these youths came and conquered the scene in their country. The songs were written by drummer Zsolt Krecsmáry aka. Scratchmary, and composed by Zsolt and András Kálmán on keyboard. Of course all band members added their part to the birth of the compositions. The tunes are mostly long play tracks with well written instrumental parts, which added a kinda jazzy feeling to the whole musical journey. Zsolt sings in patwa on a rough voice and lyrics deal with sufferation, and everyday problems.

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