16 Aug 2018
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The Black Seeds - Album Review: Fabric

26 Sep 2017 // A review by LoraThompson

Fabric (Released September 2017) is the 6th Full-length studio offering from Wellington-based band The Black Seeds – and the 12 track album certainly does not disappoint.

The band have been around since 1998, with their Global Breakthrough album generally considered to be their 2006 release Enter the Dojo.


The Black Seeds, for me are a band that sounds like New Zealand summer – for myself and all kiwis who grew in the late 90's/early 2000's everyone has those fond memories of summer nights spent dancing to their earlier hits such as Cool Me Down and So True.

And while there are certainly elements of this particularly in songs such as Moving OnLost in the Bush and Ride On – this is by far the most diverse release from the band so far.


One thing that immediately strikes me from the first listen is how layered, thick and full the vocal harmonies are.

The band has returned to their Island/Roots Origins on this album which are complimented with some rich surf-rock guitar sounds, funk inspired keyboards and bass lines and a great use of vocal effects.

Better Days was the first single from this album that the band released in 2019 and it sets the tone for the rest of record well with its catchy layered vocals and big drum sounds – but as the record progresses it has so much more to offer .


It is the keyboards rather than horns that dominate on some of the tracks such as Everybody Knows and Freakin' which I could only describe as Electro-Funk-Soul.

Keyboardist Nigel Patterson (Who also plays with Fly My Pretties) Brings some amazing vintage organs and keyboards to the mix giving the tracks a great 70's feel.


The Fourth Track Lightning Strikes is significantly more electro.

The melodies and lyrics begin to take the album in a darker direction here which I love, and segway beautifully into the Melancholic vibes of what I would describe as a classic Black Seeds track Moving On.


The title track Fabric brings a more minimalist feel than the others but with a strong lyrical message and following tracks in the second half of the album bring a much darker theme with strong political messages.

Beleza and Wake Up in particular bring some dark and highly political content – Lead singer Barnaby Weir's vocals and lyrics have evolved into a deep and more refined lyrical style than on their earlier work, and it feels as though the lyrical themes have grown up along with their audience.


The 8 piece band are kicking off the album release tour this Wednesday in Wanaka followed by a long list of dates throughout NZ and Australia, with supports from notable Wellington Act Tunes of I, as well as Pdiggsss - Peacekeeper and others.

More info and tickets from theirwebsite.



Review written by Lora Thompson

About The Black Seeds

Originating from Wellington, The Black Seeds have carved out their reputation through platinum selling albums, a masterful live show, and a sound that fuses infectious grooves and melodies with undiluted roots music. With numerous European festival tours behind them, and a successful 2009 North American album release, their following continues to spread quickly around the globe.

Led by the vocals of Barnaby Weir and Daniel Weetman, at its core The Black Seeds music is a boundary-crossing sound fusion of big-beat funk, dub, soul, mixed with vintage roots-reggae.

Described by Clash Magazine as "one of the best reggae acts on the planet", their legendary 8-piece live show brings the raw energy and good vibes wherever it goes. They have countless sell-out New Zealand and Australasian tours behind them, and regularly perform at many of Europe and North America’s biggest festivals.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for The Black Seeds

Releases

Fabric
Year: 2017
Type: Album
Dust and Dirt
Year: 2012
Type: Album
Live Vol. 1
Year: 2010
Type: Album
Specials
Year: 2010
Type: LP
Solid Ground
Year: 2008
Type: Album
Sometimes Enough
Year: 2007
Type: EP
Into The Dojo
Year: 2006
Type: Album
On The Sun
Year: 2004
Type: Album
Pushed (Keep On Pushing Remixed)
Year: 2002
Type: Album
Keep On Pushing
Year: 2001
Type: LP

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