REVIEW: Kirkledove – Rumble In The Jungle

By Liam Monaghan

Kirk Bennett aka Kirkledove is the go to top session drummer recently for some of the biggest names in Reggae music. In 2015 he was on a European tour with legend Beres Hammond and other credits include Lion Paw by Tarrus Riley; Solid as a Rock, Thank You Mama (Sizzla); I Feel Good, Come Down Father (Beres Hammond); and Queen Ifrica’s Lioness on the Rise.

There’s no denying that Rumble In The Jungle (expected to hit the digital stores June 17, 2016) is a Dub influenced album but what is unique about this collection of music is that you can’t pigeon hole it into Reggae or Ska or Dancehall as there are many combinations of music that go into the tracks. Obviously music is a personal taste which is why this album I feel will be like ‘marmite’… for those who don’t know marmite, it’s a paste in the UK and the strap line is ‘Love it or Hate it’ now I don’t think people will hate this collection of music as it’s a great piece of music that’s been put together, however it boils down to personal taste in what you want from a track.

No one can argue that Bennett is a talented drummer and I suppose performing with legends all day everyday must give him inspiration for his own sounds and ideas, which the result is this album. He’s been quoted in the past as saying “It’s showing the different side of Kirkledove. I do things for people everyday so this is my energy, my vibe,” Bennetts production set up has been responsible for releases such as Tek Wey Yuhself by Mr Vegas and Elephant Man’s Yuh Too Bad Mind.

There’s a range of big named musicians on this album and I imagine being experienced and having a phone book like Bennetts, acquiring the talent was just a call away. We hear bass lines from players Glen Browne and Ian Hoilette; guitarists Mitchum Chin and Lamont ‘Monty’ Savory and saxophonist Dean Fraser.

Cold Johnny Dub Ft Jesse Royal
An interesting track here, the riddim has a lot going on. Not a fan of the military rolling drumming throughout the track as I feel it takes away the concentration on the rest of the track. Take the drumming out and create more of an original sounding Dub structure of track and it would suit the vocals of Jesse Royal, who delivers on form as he always normally does.

Major Minor
We start the track abruptly with a combination of jazz and funk flavours with a wavy horn line before climaxing in a slowed down Dub like tempo with the drum splashes echoing out on the offbeat and electronic sounding keys guiding us through the track. Id rather have had Cold Jonny Dub similar to this track and has Jesse Royal vocal however, it’s a nice listen.

Rubba Dub Again Ft Tarrus Riley
Probably my favourite track so far. I would label this track as the first that’s ‘radio friendly’ and would be received well in a live performance. The riddim is simple with all the features of a modern reggae sound with that 70’s rock style guitar effect with a wicked drum structure with a wandering bass line. Tarrus Riley delivers an amazing vocal on this track, incredibly uplifting!

Rumble In The Jungle Ft Azuri Campbell
We start off the track with what will instantly paint an image of Clint Eastwood about to duel some gunslinger in a dusty shantytown. However it doesn’t mean this song is a western, you’ll understand when you hear it. I suppose this track is such a fusion of non-traditional reggae riddims that it’s difficult to pigeonhole into a specific genre. Azuri Campbells soft voice harmonises throughout which creates an air around the track, it gives a sense of Drama. A nice track overall.

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