13 Songs, 55 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars were formed while its members were living in exile in Guinea during the Sierra Leone civil war. Much of the group’s debut, 2006’s Living Like a Refugee, was recorded in Guinea but the band eventually returned to its homeland. 2010’s Rise & Shine, which was produced by Steve Berlin of Los Lobos fame, presents a nice set of reggae songs and West African material. The album kicks off with traditional drumming that morphs into the flowing highlife of “Muloma (Let Us Be United).” “Global Threat” rides a solid reggae rhythm and New Orleans-based Trombone Shorty lends his assertive brass tones to the cut. (Rise & Shine was recorded in Freetown and New Orleans.) “Oruwiebie / Magazine Bobo Medley” finds chant-like vocals accompanied by lively percussion along with some nice touches of harmonica. “Living Stone” fuses West African elements with chugging reggae, while “Tamagbondorsu (The Rich Mock the Poor)” is a slice of ecstatic highlife. The album wraps up with the Dancehall stylings of “Gbrr Mani (Trouble)” and the loose, easygoing reggae of “Watching All Your Ways.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars were formed while its members were living in exile in Guinea during the Sierra Leone civil war. Much of the group’s debut, 2006’s Living Like a Refugee, was recorded in Guinea but the band eventually returned to its homeland. 2010’s Rise & Shine, which was produced by Steve Berlin of Los Lobos fame, presents a nice set of reggae songs and West African material. The album kicks off with traditional drumming that morphs into the flowing highlife of “Muloma (Let Us Be United).” “Global Threat” rides a solid reggae rhythm and New Orleans-based Trombone Shorty lends his assertive brass tones to the cut. (Rise & Shine was recorded in Freetown and New Orleans.) “Oruwiebie / Magazine Bobo Medley” finds chant-like vocals accompanied by lively percussion along with some nice touches of harmonica. “Living Stone” fuses West African elements with chugging reggae, while “Tamagbondorsu (The Rich Mock the Poor)” is a slice of ecstatic highlife. The album wraps up with the Dancehall stylings of “Gbrr Mani (Trouble)” and the loose, easygoing reggae of “Watching All Your Ways.”

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