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The Black Seeds - EP Review: Refabricated: Fabric Remixes and Rarities

10 Jul 2019 // A review by jacindaeve

The Black Seeds are a New Zealand household name synonymous with cruisy summer afternoons. Their dub, roots, and reggae influenced sound has earned them an established reputation as masters of the groove - and their latest offering does not disappoint. With a career spanning 21 years, The Black Seeds have received critical acclaim, not only in New Zealand, but also in Australia, Europe, and America. The band are set to begin a tour of Bali and Europe before the month is out; a testament to their work ethic and drive as they tour a piece of New Zealand’s iconic roots sound out on the world stage.

The latest offering, Refabricated: Fabric Remixes and Rarities is a collection of remixes and original songs with a connection to their sixth album Fabric. Featuring 6 tracks including 3 unreleased tracks (arguably 4!), the EP still stands up as a cohesive unit on its own. Rather than a few songs not quite strong enough to make the album for Fabric, the unreleased tracks on this EP bring the solid groove and stoner vibes we have come to expect from The Black Seeds. The bohemian lyrics speak of fraternity, love, and social justice- just as all good reggae should!

Hypnotised Again makes for a strong start to the EP; packed with funk, it wastes no time in laying out a heavy-handed haze in equal parts of feel-good bounce and laid-back groove. A surprise stand out is Mariana Trench, an original instrumental piece evoking a dub Pink Floyd feel; spacey, trancey, and dreamy. Listen out for the Hammond solo bringing serious levels of vintage cool to the track. A definite highlight of the EP is the vocal performance by Israel Starr on Part of Me bringing all the heart and soul of a modern Horace Andy. Built on the same solid foundations as Moving On (a single from Fabric), this track would have been an easy favourite for me if it weren’t for the rap from UK artist Gardna. Gardna’s work on this track instantly broke the groove, leaving only the memory of what was. The EP ends on remixes of Fabric (Bolt42 & Mu of Fat Freddy's Drop) and Everybody Knows (Deep Fried Dub). While Everybody Knows retains some feel, Fabric flops. Jaunty synths skip over heavily delayed vocal snippets perhaps intended to mystify, but rather, stupefy.

The originals from this EP are all strong enough to be on the album, and a definite must-listen not only for fans of Fabric. The EP captures the chilled yet danceable vibes The Black Seeds have come to be known for and it should not be passed over as B-sides only for die-hard fans. It’s easy to see why the band were not able to close off Fabric without respecting the material on Refabricated: Fabric Remixes and Rarities - they’re simply too good to go unheard.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )

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


Year: 2019
Type: EP
Year: 2017
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape
Dust and Dirt
Year: 2012
Type: Album
Live Vol. 1
Year: 2010
Type: Album
Year: 2010
Type: Unknown
Solid Ground
Year: 2008
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape
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: Album

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