I Sound Is from Creation

I Sound Is from Creation

A deep, richly conceived roots album that pays homage to Jamaica's vast musical history while managing to sound resolutely contemporary, I Sound Is from Creation is a resoundingly successful collaboration between veteran deejay Prezident Brown and the seasoned instrumental outfit Axx of Jahpostles. Brown, who took his name from his mentor U Brown, is a battle-hardened performer with a gruff vocal style that works equally well over hard-hitting roots or frenetic dancehall rhythms. I Sound Is from Creation finds him firmly in roots territory, with the Jahpostles cranking out lush instrumental tracks that reference classic foundation rhythms like The Upsetters’ “Dub Organizer” and Glen Brown’s “Termination Dub.” Though the album opens with “Fi Wi Queen”—a jubilant celebration of the 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence from British rule—I Sound Is Creation is a surprisingly dark album. On “Cease Fire,” Brown serves up a stark portrayal of the gun violence that continues to plague Jamaica over the epochal “M-16” riddim. Elsewhere Brown’s lyrics are similarly serious, as on the rueful “Hypocritical Smiling Faces” and the militant “Free the People."

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