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Microphones And Sofas
~ Jago

  • Label: Tru Thoughts
  • Cat Number: TRUCD319

Tracklist

Arrow Icon Art & Mind feat. Ghost Writerz & Junior DangerousBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Struggling feat. Galak Spiritual & Chief RockasBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Intellect feat. RIddim TuffaBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Who Dem feat.  Junior Dangerous, Yemi Bolatiwa, Zico & HyluBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Murderation Sound feat. Ghost Writerz, 2Nice & Junior DangerousBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon When She Enter feat. Colour Code, Honey Brown & Ed WestBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Lost My Way feat. RIddim TuffaBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Dangerous feat. Junior Dangerous & Ghost Writerz Buy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Worldwide feat. Bahia, Junior Dangerous, RTKal & Ed WestBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Undercover feat. DJ VadimBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon Mr Jobsworth feat. Ghost WriterzBuy MP3 £0.50
Arrow Icon One Day At A Time feat. Airklipz, The Sea & Red I Rob Buy MP3 £0.50

Description

‘Microphones And Sofas’ is the debut album from Jago on Tru Thoughts via the label’s fruitful UK Sound System Culture platform Sharp And Ready. Featuring collaborations with fellow members of the Sharp And Ready (and Unit 137) family - including RTKal, Ed West, Hylu, Ghost Writerz, Galak Spiritual and Bahia - alongside Chief Rockas and more, this album spotlights some of the most progressive and talented MCs, producers & DJs working in the current UK Dub, Reggae and Dancehall scene.

London born Jago grew up at a time when Jungle in its earliest forms could be heard blaring out of doors via pirate radio stations and record shops alike. Inspired by ‘90s Jungle and Ragga MC’s, ‘Microphones And Sofas’ offers up a reggae and Future Dancehall mix which pays its dues to a deep history of Sound Clash battles and cites current political issues which are hammered home by a forward-thinking future-bass sound and quick-witted and conscious lyrics.

Behind the music, the album title marks a significant period of instability in Jago’s life. Striving to develop and progress as a musician, while living in a different city from his daughter and determined to spend time with her, Jago has spent the last three years technically homeless, sleeping on sofas at different studios, rehearsal rooms and friends’ houses.

The lead single “Struggling feat. Galak Spiritual & Chief Rockas”/“Undercover feat. DJ Vadim” offers a taste of the LP’s nature: simultaneously fun and free-wheeling whilst speaking out about real grass-roots struggles. “Struggling” features the soulful vocals of French MC Galak Spiritual (onlyjoe) on issues of poverty and social injustice which resonate through Chief Rockas’ dub vibrations. This is backed by original bad boy song “Undercover feat. DJ Vadim”, where heavy production is offset by a light-hearted flow as the boys adopt walkie-talkies, fomenting trouble with their stealthy riddims.

Jago’s ties with the Unit 137 crew sparked many of the studio partnerships on the album, which channel the raw flow and tenacious improvisation synonymous with Sound Systems. Bringing Future Dancehall to the floor, “Murderation Sound feat. Ghost Writerz, 2Nice & Junior Dangerous” and “Dangerous feat. Ghost Writerz & Junior Dangerous” are big Sound Clash tunes with lyrics and production so sharp they’d switch up a room in any dub fi dub battle leaving that soundboy lost for plates. Flexing gritty vocal muscles with floor-stopping breaks and special collaborations, Jago celebrates the roots of Sound Clash Battles, an element of Dancehall music that he has always particularly loved.

Reflecting the mischief touched upon in “Undercover”, “Lost My Way feat. Riddim Tuffa” offers guidance – be it a metaphor for not losing your way in life, or on your way home when you leave the club. This playful nature also resonates through “Mr Jobsworth feat. Ghost Writerz”, which goes out to local authority representatives and the like - such as certain bus drivers and law officials - that prey on vulnerable members of the community.

“Intellect” calls to value political freedom, whilst the fresh production of “Riddim Tuffa” holds onto a Dancehall sound with analogue reverb and dub nastiness. In “Worldwide”, Junior Dangerous invites you to rise up in true Junglist revolutionary fashion, over iconic stripped-back bass and a powerful chorus ruled by Bahia. “Who Dem feat. Junior Dangerous, Yemi Bolatiwa, Zico & Hylu” highlights some of the key renegade collaborators on the album, similar to “One Day At A Time” where Jago links up with Airklipz, The Sea & Red I Rob for some studio time to push strictly good-time vibes and messages of positivity to leave the album on a high. 

As a writer, producer and vocalist, in recent years Jago has released on labels such as Big Dada, Unit137, Irish Moss, Reggae Roast and Dub-Stuy, to add to a number of self-releases, with notable tastemaker support from the likes of David Rodigan (BBC 1Xtra), Don Letts (BBC 6Music), Huey Morgan (BBC 6Music), Crises (SUB FM) and many blogs around the world. Alongside his solo work, Jago is widely recognised as one of the frontmen for renowned reggae nine-piece onlyjoe, with whom he has played countless festivals including sets at Glastonbury and opening for Grammy-nominated musician Julian Marley on the Boomtown Fair main stage. With goals to keep taking his music further, and plenty of live plans on the cards, Jago looms large in the New Wave of organic Sound System Culture flowing into summer 2016 and beyond.

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