Citizen of NYC
Reggae's best kept secret is alive and well in the Big Apple. Louis Atlas emerges as a traditionalist, so you won't hear any digital trickery or other stuff that can't be played in the flesh. Up-front and in-your face, Atlas intelligently waxes political, spiritual, and philosophical without coming off as preachy, un-informed, or condescending; such a feat is rare these days, regardless of your political bent. Throughout Citizen, Atlas distills influences both old and new into a modernistic brew of grooves, funky riffs, story-telling, and melodies. The title cut, which refers to the artist's reaction to 9/11 and it's aftermath is abetted by neo-psychedelic guitar licks, druggy sound collages, and a Lennon-esque 'I'm Only Sleeping' vocal delivery. The brass counterpoints of 'Hey Remember' and 'You Don't Remember' exude a Stax/Motown vibe. In the end, love, music and happiness will save the day as stated in the final cut 'Lion.' Like the reggae greats of yore, Atlas both tells it and plays it like it is.