Roots of Creation’s Dub Free or Die Vol. #1

by Kidman J. Williams

Rude boys and girls bust out your 50-inch Jnco jeans and designer wallet chains! Roots of Creation has made a collection of Dub music that will make your grandma jive and your bong quiver. And when your grandma does start dancing, make sure to get that on TikTok and call an ambulance because she is going to be laying down some moves to RoC’s newest offering that are going to displace her hip and break her tailbone.

Those of you that haven’t had the pleasure of listening to this reggae/rock/dub band, you really should treat yourself. Their newest album, Dub Free or Die Vol. #1 is a spectacular addition to the Dub genre.

I’ve never been a big fan of electronic music. I’ve never pretended to like it in a club to get women or fit in. I was a punker kid from the Chicagoland area. I loved all types of music including ska and reggae. The illegal rave scene in the area was never my place in the world. I never could get into the cold beats and generic DJ’s that all used the same transitions and sounds. Dub is different.

The one thing I immediately noticed about this album is that it has real feeling. From the first chord this album moves you and creates an emotional Big Bang. The album’s dynamism is like a great jazz album from masters like Miles Davis, Jimmy McGriff or Gene Krupa.

RoC has proven that electronic music can have soul.

“Are you my Uber” blasts off with the horns wailing to a matador. It gives you this Spaniard/reggae feel that just pulls you in and sets a melodic tone for the rest of the album.

One of my favorite tracks is “Black Bear Dub.” The opening gives you a complete misdirection. You really aren’t sure where the music is going to go. The intro gives the impression of a much heavier and harder future, but that reggae backbeat settles you in for the changes to come.

Some of the transitions are using instruments that are hard to detect. There is a guitar that is made to sound like a theremin. The changes just take you on a long drive off a short pier into the water where your car turns into a submarine to discover the wonders of the sea.

Yes, I’m sober! Why do you ask?

The last three, maybe four tracks on this delight give you the lyrical bite that you might have been craving. I’ll explain.

There is a track on the listing that I came across on the album’s sleeve art. I realized that I was missing RoC’s version of the Allman Brothers Band classic, “Soulshine.” I found the track on YouTube. I love this song! It holds up to the original. It may have been a glitch in the download. I don’t know. But this song feeds my soul just as the original version did. It tickles the taint in ways that are unexplainable. It might be the saxophone solo. That might have been the winning vibration.

The other three tracks at the end are amazing. They feature artists like Mighty Mystic on “Light it Up,” Hayley Jane on “Seven Nation Army,” and Billy Kottage on “Wake Up.”

RoC along with Hayley Jane’s guest vocals give a whole new depth to the already legendary “Seven Nation Army.” For all of us who have been listening to this great radio hit for the last eighteen years, they give a chill churner that just continues to give. It is almost as if Carlos Santana channeled the songs guitar solos. While giving you all the calm grooves, the song still manages to hit you with the heaviness of the original.

RoC already managed to pull a few rabbits out of the hat for Dub Free or Die Vol. #1. It makes you wonder if RoC will be pulling some extra tricks from the rabbit’s anal canal for Vol. #2. This album will make you dance, it will have you relaxed, it will even make you philosophize. Much like a great wine amongst friends, this album forces many wonderful emotions out of the human soul.

BUY Roots of Creation’s Dub Free or Die Vol. #1 HERE