"Truth & Love"
The newly released album Truth & Love, by the midwest group, 77 Jefferson, is exactly what we had hoped for. Although each song from Truth & Love differs in their own way, they keep the title message Truth & Love flowing throughout the album. It begins with Cool It Down. Opening with powerful bass lines, skanking guitar riffs, awesome vocals and intense drum beats, Cool It Down is just what this album needed to get it started and kicking within no time. The following track titled, Lovely, is a song that really drew my attention. It consists of a wonderful one-drop rhythm, which is complimented by Castillo's mellow vocals and a very chill saxophone solo to help end this song.
During the album 77 Jefferson are joined by three familiar voices. Dan Kelly of Fortunate Youth lays down some vocals for the song On the Run, and Eddie Blunt joins in on the song we've all heard and love, titled, The Sound. Eddie and 77 Jefferson came up big with these songs, giving them the best harmonies on the album. Ikeana Dupont of Cease Fyah also joins the group for the song, Fast Girl.
As Call Me Up plays it gives the album an upbeat vibe with stellar vocals and continues to display the constant message of Love throughout. Keep on Movin goes back to the mellowed out rhythm and vocals and is indeed another irie addition to the album. As the album played I couldn't help but notice that the once powerful dub beats that we heard in previous 77 Jefferson albums weren't there. In earlier releases we heard bass filled electronic dub beats, but now that has been replaced with natural instruments, giving it a better sound in my opinion.
Waiting On is another track that gives the album its nice, mellow vibe that we expect from 77 Jefferson. Castillo's voice really helps make this song what it is by flowing and fitting itself between the other instruments. Compare to Nothing begins with a simply awesome and mellow guitar intro followed by the rest of the instruments and vocals, which are very relaxing. This song also focuses on the message of Love, which is constant throughout the album.
As the album comes to its closing and title song, Truth & Love, 77 Jefferson has left us with a masterpiece. Again, Castillo's voice fits in perfectly with the other instruments, blending the song into an inspirational message; "We want the truth now, and all we need is love". 77 Jefferson tried something different and moved away from the dub beats that we once heard and stayed with traditional instruments and vocals. And they did an excellent job at making this album what it is. Each song is unique and has features of modern reggae and traditional reggae, and brings to the listener the messages of Truth & Love. Go pick up the album now if you haven't already!
Reviewed by: Tyler Serenelli
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