German ensemble Seeed rose to national success in the early-2000s thanks to their energetic fusion of hip-hop, reggae, and dancehall, and early hits like "Dickes B" and "Music Monks." Complete with a horn section, DJ, and multiple singers, the 11-piece band became a consistent chart presence in their home country, notching numerous gold and platinum records while building up a widespread fan base in neighboring countries as well. Reaching a career high with 2005's Next!, Seeed made an even greater comeback after a seven-year gap with their eponymous chart-topping fourth album.
Seeed formed in Berlin in 1998 -- a product of the city's nascent dancehall scene, their sprawling, multi-ethnic, and multilingual lineup comprises vocalists Pierre "Enuff" Baigorry, Demba "Ear" Nabé, and Frank "Eased" Dellé; DJ Luke; guitarist "Rudeboy" Rudy; bassist Tobsen Cordes; keyboardist "Dubmaster" Reibold; saxophonist Moritz Delgado; trombonist Jerome "Tchamp" Bugnon; drummer Based, and percussionist Alfie Trowers. Opening slots for visiting headliners including Buju Banton established Seeed's reputation as a dynamic live act, and over time their set lists -- initially made up of classic reggae covers including "The Tide Is High" and "Police and Thieves" -- began to include original material as well. Seeed issued their debut LP, New Dubby Conquerors, in 2001, scoring a massive German pop hit with the single "Dickies B." Traditional reggae gave way to dancehall on the 2003 follow-up, Music Monks, which yielded its own smash, "Water Pumpee." Atlanta soul savant Cee-Lo guested on Seeed's third LP, the 2005 release Next! The band's powerful stage show was documented on the 2006 album Live, but it would be five years before Seeed would release a new recording, when they dropped the 2011 single "Molotov/Wonderful Life." In the fall of 2012, Seeed returned with a self-titled album that would become their first full-length release to rise to the top of the German sales charts, while also going Top Five in Austria and Switzerland; the album also spawned three singles, "Beautiful," "Augenbling," and "Deine Zeit." In May 2018, with a fall tour already booked and rehearsals underway for new recordings, Seeed vocalist Demba Nabé was found dead at the age of 46. ~ Jason Ankeny