STYLE: Reggae RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 151430-22133 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RRP: £4.99
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Back in 1996 ragga man Watchman was voted Britain's best gospel rapper and this set, produced in Jamaica by Jermaine Edwards, shows that the Londoner has lost none of his skills as he demonstrates his rapid-tongued flows. At the time of this album's released in 2014 Watchman said that its inspiration was "at the most difficult time in my life when everything that could have gone wrong went wrong. . . My biggest influence, my father, died unexpectedly and my wife, who I had known for over 25 years and married for 11, decided to jump ship. . . I felt like a failure and at the same time lonely and ashamed. Sadly that's how you were made to feel in the church, worse if you're a man." In view of this background it is hardly surprising that some of the songs here bristle with anger and frustration and are almost Davidic in their pained outpourings to God. But others are suffused with hope. The most powerful track of all is "Wow ftg Positive" which speaks of God's unconditional love with a frank admission that words cannot express the enormity of that love. Almost as effective is "Bible", the ragga praise "Come Let Us Praise Him" and "I Just Want To Be True" on which producer Edwards makes an appearance. Even if ragamuffin isn't your style of choice, the sheer intensity of Watchman's flows, aided by its roots JA sounds, make this a powerful project.
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