June 10, 2018

Mystic Bowie | Mystic Bowie's Talking Dreads

ARTIST: Mystic Bowie
TITLE: Mystic Bowie’s Talking Dreads
LABEL: MTMB Entertainment
I didn’t expect to be reviewing two albums of Talking Heads covers this week. You may have already heard about Angelique Kidjo’s remake of Remain In Light; it’s getting lots of well-deserved media attention. Mystic Bowie, on the other hand, will probably fly beneath the radar, even though he’s part of the Talking Heads extended family – he’s the long-time lead singer for Tom Tom Club. Mystic’s background is in reggae, and he’s enlisted some top Jamaican names to help him here: the band features guitarist Ernest Ranglin and sax player Dean Fraser, and singers Tarrus Riley (track 2) and Freddie McGregor (8) make cameo appearances. I expected this to be a novelty album, but it’s much more than that – start with track 4 from Remain In Light, a version that beats Kidjo’s take on the song. Other highlights include a ska version of “Life During Wartime” (8), deep cut “Pulled Up” from Talking Heads: 77 as rocksteady (7), and rootsy versions of “Slippery People” (2) and “Burning Down The House” (3). Unrelated to Talking Heads, there’s also a dynamite reading of “Piece Of My Heart” (12). This one will leave you smiling.
TOP TRACKS:    2    3    4    7    8    12
ALSO RECOMMENDED:    1    5    6    9    11    13

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