The voice of change and standing up with purpose has never sounded as good as it does with the new EP from UK reggae band onlyjoe. Led by the absorbing single Revolution, the five track release brings a message and uplifting energy in unison with a fine craft and emotive heart. It sweeps one up in a rising emotion and intent that is impossible not to be inspired by as the infectious and stirring sounds within Revolution flow and pulsate.
onlyjoe is a nine strong London band which has lit up stages with their highly energetic shows and sounds alongside the likes of Tippa Irie, Mad Professor, Aba Shanti-I, Solo Banton, Zion Train, Demolition Man, Congo Natty and more. A force and notorious for ripping up the dance floor, onlyjoe has established a formidable reputation and presence amongst underground parties, clubs and major festivals throughout the UK. Revolution is the first sure step in taking it to the fullest level of awareness and audiences, something it is hard imagining from this release alone will not be successful.
The title track squeals in on sonic breaks as the band begins littering and spotting the ears with tempting melodies alongside glorious and warm brass sounds. The song commences to sway and bob with eager teasing riffs and boisterous beats, the rhythms and melodies the kinder with the song the fuse and match to spark and ignite the senses. The smooth mesmeric vocals of Zico grab the emotions and draw them in for the excellent gravelly tones of Jago to bring an inciteful intensity and defiance. It is a perfect mix that ripples within the hypnotic quality sounds surrounding them. Revolution was written just before the London riots and prophetically seems to soundtrack the rest of the year from after that particular moment
The EP also includes an instrumental dub version from Hylu and a trio of remixes from artists that have inspired the band. The first is from Bristol based dubstep don, RSD. He sends the track into different heights with his intriguing and inspired manipulations, his version having a pulsating darker vein that resonates throughout. This is followed by a mix from UK hip-hop legend Skitz in collaboration with the excellent The Sea. It is a version which seems to pull the light and dark sides from the song to place them to the fore in an enthused and dazzling battle. In what are all absorbing remixes this is the best and most fulfilling. A jungle version from Unit 137 family member Sleepy Time Ghost closes off the release in a strong and pleasing rapture of sounds.
Every track on Revolution is a brew of invention and sounds whilst the impressive original version of the song brings energy and thought to drive and inspire each and every day. It is compulsive and deeply effective with onlyjoe the freshest and most vibrant voice in UK reggae.
Be sure to check out the video for Revolution below which features their performance at Occupy London at the end of 2011.