From Baltimore, MD, 9 Mile Roots have produced some incredibly fat-sounding tracks on their latest album released in the Spring of 2017 entitled ReEvolve. In the tradition of artists such as Ali Campbell of UB40 and Snow who incorporate the sounds of the Islands through their singing, but with a heavy emphasis on the classic Reggae tone combined with a fusion of Rock music elements such as bluesy guitar solos, this album offers the common chill vibes of Reggae and the heavier edge of Rock N Roll. However, the vocalists of 9 Mile Roots do not exactly possess that classic reggae tone in their voices. Having a seasoned reggae vocalist join in on these songs would help this band achieve the next level of reggae authenticity. Perhaps I just find their voices slightly nasally and high-pitched to be singing music which usually ventures into deeper and sensual vocal ranges and tones.
With sweet sounding yet heavy guitar solos, my personal favourite track, “On The Floor,” and “Bad Blood” are great examples of songs that provide both smooth and feel good Reggae vibes with the cutting, in-your-face weight that Rock music tends to bring.
Having excellent production quality, the album really provides a solid sound and impact to get the listeners’ hearts beating strong. The instrumentation is moving and orchestrated very well. I would be pleased to listen to this album as an instrumental.
Although my sentiments regarding the lack of reggae authenticity in their voices and accents stand, I will say that there are many instances where both the instrumentation and vocal melodies are great, uplifting, and work well together.
Written by Keenan Kerr
*edited by Danielle Kenedy