Album Review: Askala Selassie – Warrior Empress
Absolutely Uplifting and Powerful! Askala Selassie’s first Album, Warrior Empress released on 3rd June 2016 under VP Records & VPAL Music, is making head ways within the Reggae Circuit. This amazing album consist of 12 Reggae Tracks and 3 heart ponding Dub Tracks.
Captivating her listeners with an angelic opening, is the first track “Holy Holy,” demonstrating Askala Selassie’s spiritual belief and dedication to the Rastafarian Faith. Smoothing ones soul, this track purifies you before you enter upon the album’s musical journey.
Suddenly you are thrown onto the righteous battle field with the Title track, “Warrior Empress,” recorded at Tuff Gong Studio, Jamaica. A militant and mighty sound causing you to get into Warrior mode. With thrilling harmonies, this song echoes the message of strength and the continued progression of every Empress in the world. The horns section by the legend Dean Fraser and riddim played by the Fire House Crew band. Within the song, Askala Selassie hails many pioneers of the Female Struggle such as Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, the Queen of Sheba, Rita Marley, Marcia Griffiths, Queen Ifrica, Jah9, her Mother and Daughter.
The third track, “Rocky Road,” is sung upon the Legend I Kong’s original, “The Way It Is.” A hard instrumental to sing upon especially with I Kong’s classic setting a high precedent but Askala Selassie does so beautifully. A relaxing and smoothing song giving a word of encouragement about love and life, you’ll soon be singing along.
The encouragement does not end there! “Rise Up,” track four featuring the fire blazing and talented Ras Charmer gets you doing just that. A true anthem, Askala Selassie rallies all to Rise Up & Move to the upbeat One Drop, mixed at the famous Stingray Studio in London and the stimulating guitar is Valerie Skeete from the Soul Rebel Band. A great collaborations from two versatile and lyrical Artists.
Focusing the mind of the listener with its Bass Heavy top “Hard Work,” is featured on the Album at number five. The songs opening reminds one of the legendary Bob Marley track “Work,” although by no means the same. The brilliant Drum work within the track is absolutely ingenious and by the mastermind Paul “Jazzwad” Yebuah who features as a musician upon many tracks on the album and the dub track for this song is at number six.
Askala Selassie then unleashes the ultimate surprise with the Beautiful Love Song “I’ll Wait.” A true expression of love and devotion for a Special King. This Lovers Revival track at number seven will without a doubt be a, “pull up” track inna the dance. With a rockers bubble, you can’t help but sway to this one.
Listeners then find themselves relaxing on the beaches of Jamaica with track number eight, “Land Jamaica.” The lead guitar has you floating throughout the luscious lands and the silk harmonies have you cruising on the seas. Askala Selassie truly captures your imagination as she walks you from one end of Jamaica to the next. A wonderful Caribbean experience.
A tribute to every Rasta worldwide is track nine’ “Rebel,” with an authentic Rasta trodding steppas sound. The instrumental original sang on by the Legend I Jahman Levi with his awesome hit, “Moulding,” but no doubt this version is a Fire track! A powerful Sound System anthem, Askala Selassie chants to all upon the Righteous Path. Filled with compelling Lyrics and a Regal horn section, this track is absolutely Sovereign.
“My Life,” is and will be a Sound System favourite undoubtably. A production of Genis Trani for GreenLight Sound system Reggaeland Studios (Barcelona), this track at number ten is already rocking the UK Sound System. Accompanied by a dub at number eleven, Askala Selassie empowering chant throughout the track has the listener skanking unstoppably.
At track twelve is the Studio One track , “This Old World,” mixed by Carl Dille Mcleod of Stingray Records. Cleverly lyrically put together, Askala Selassie uses the popular English Nursery Rhythm, “This Old World,” to address the issues within the world and what to do to make it better. A catchy, admirable and thoughtful track.
A UK Lovers Rock style is portrayed within track thirteen with “This Love,” featuring Jamaica’s ‘Never Lost My Way’ Ginjah. This track dedicated to Askala Selassie Love to the Almighty and sharing the joy she feels within her spirituality. Ginjah’s silk and warm vocals compliment the track. “I Love You Always,” is another beautiful Love track and is sung exquisitely at number fourteen. This track is a contemporary Reggae Track and heartfelt. Her Love is expressed passionately, sincerely and faithfully.
The album concludes with a Powerful Dub of the title track which serves as a reminder of what Askala Selassie is… a true Warrior Empress. Overall this album portray’s Askala Selassie’s passion and dedication to the Rastafarian faith. Her deep consciousness and ultimate mission is exemplified throughout her lyrical content and her precision upon the topics identified within each track. Careful thought can be seen from the engineers used to the studio’s of which Askala Selassie has recorded each track at. Working alongside the Jamaican legends Robert Lyn, composer of ‘Pass the Dutchie’ and Dwight Pinkney from the Roots Radics, its clear this Album will be one of Askala Selassie’s classic Albums.
As a first album from Askala Selassie, she has undoubtedly turned heads with this awesome, fire blazing and prestigious album. She is a Royal talented Empress within the Reggae Industry and we wish her every success with this Album. In the words of Askala Selassie, “I’ll Wait,” for next album because we know its going be absolutely amazing!!!
ARTICLE BY PRINCESS PYHIA – JOURNALIST FOR REGGAE BRITANNIA. @REGGAEBRIT @PRINCESSPYHIA
Askala Selassie – Warrior Empress
DIGITAL RELEASE [Stingray Records / VPAL Music]
Release date: 03/06/2016
02. Warrior Empress
03. Rocky Road
04. Rise Up feat. Ras Charmer
05. Hard Work
06. Hard Work (Dub)
07. I’ll Wait
08. Jamaica Land
10. My Life
11. My Life (Dub)
12. This Old World
13. This Love feat. Ginjah
14. Love You Always
15. Warrior Empress (Dub)
If you want to get your hands on the Askala Selassie Empress Warrior Album then click here!!!
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