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World Music CD Reviews North American

The Coldspot 8

By Matt Schiener
Published January 5, 2007

Get On High

Get On High is a melodious collection of roots, rocksteady and ska with a twist of dub. Produced by the multi-talented instrumentalist, studio engineer and owner of Stubborn Records King Django, the Coldspot 8’s latest release is best listened to in a hammock with a Red Stripe in hand. While the organ-heavy sound, loose horn arrangements and vocal phrasing offer a direct mental flight to the Caribbean, repetition is Get On High’s biggest flaw. Despite a few standout tracks (the title cut and “My Little Life”) and an appearance by German toast-master Dr. Ring-Ding on “Peace And Love,” vocalist Jah Point has a moderate range, making it hard to differentiate between tracks. “Find My Way” is by far the most energetic moment of the set, full of rapid fiya rim shots and complete with a wavy dancehall vibe. “Watch Ya Girl” is reminiscent of NYC’s own Slackers, and “People Demma” is a traditional, sleepy Jamaican reggae track full of vocal harmonies and delicate bass lines. Although Get On High sounds like it could have been produced at the height of the mid-’90s ska revival, the album bounces with rootsy exuberance, thoughtful lyrics and traditional stylin’.