Afro dub monks from London
Soothsayers have been in their SW2 studio producing their own wide reaching sonic reflection of the locality which draws together the local raw materials of 24 carat dub, afro-beat, and deep-funk in compelling style. Influences are evidently wide ranging and numerous but The Wailers, Fela, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Skatalites, The Specials, Masakela ,Roots Manuva, Massive Attack, King Tubby should not be ignored.
The result is One More Reason, the band’s forthcoming third album (release date: March 2009) where producers and horn maestros Idris Rahman and Robin Hopcraft have brought a dub into the foreground by inviting features from legendary reggae vocalists Johnny Clarke, Michael Prophet and Linval Thompson as guests, as well as a contribution from Mad Professor and mixes by Manasseh.
The skeletons of the tunes were tried and tested in their legendary bi-monthly “Red Earth Collective” Effra session, Brixton’s hang out for musicians and music lovers and this has built Soothsayers music a dedicated local following. They have also proved that their immediate, uplifting energy travels well and a broad musical appeal has taken them gigging with their regular 7 piece band throughout the UK and Europe including massive festivals like Glastonbury, Rototom Reggae (Italy) and North Sea Jazz (Netherlands). As a live experience, fiery, soulful vocal chants, conquering horns, fat, heavy grooves and a line –up of astonishingly talented musicians produce a memorable, afro-inspired, dub-fuelled, dance-inducing experience.
Soothsayers made an initial mark with their acclaimed debut album, Lost City, which was grounded largely in a jazz framework, shaded by hues of reggae and African rhythms. That set was followed by Tangled Roots, an exceptional second album that defies standard classifications: the West African root that drove Fela Kuti’s rebellion is filtered through the deeply seductive dub experimentation of Lee Perry, King Tubby and Augustus Pablo, to create a sound firmly lodged in London’s broader musical experience.
“Thrilling harmonies…seriously infectious dance-floor grooves…goose bump inducing vocals” The Guardian
The line-up is a minimum of 7 musicians plus the option of increasing to 9 on stage. The core band features Robin Hopcraft (trumpet/vocals), Idris Rahman (sax/vocals), Zoe Rahman (keyboard), Julia Biel (vocals), Kodjovi Kush (bass/vocals), Patrick Illingworth (drums), and Phil Dawson/Derek Johnson (guitars)
Soothsayers also offer guest appearances from Michael Prophet (UK resident) . Johnny Clarke (Jamaica), Linval Thompson (Jamaica)