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Friday, Sep 05 2014 | 00:31
Image: 1590753 Hempolics are back in action this time on new label home BBE. First up is the Green Line / News Readers ep the start of a slow build all leading up to their forthcoming new studio album.

The Hempolics are out to put those organic rootsy vibes back into electronic music
and bring something altogether different to the table, Green Line is just the
Some of you will recognize Green Line as a song originally voiced by the late, great
Garnett Silk over Jackie Mittoo’s Hot Milk riddim. Here Grippa Laybourne has kept
the classic rhythm to the fore, with echo and rewinds all punctuating the vocal
delivered by members Nubiya (also of Leeds-London Afrobeat/hip-hop pioneers
Nubiyan Twist) and Dandelion (frontman of mercurial UK-reggae outfit
The Drop), complete with a toasting interlude. The sensibility, right from its opening
Barrington Levy-esque ‘bongo-didddly-ooooooaahh’, is early digital dancehall, but
as you’d expect from Grippa, well-known for his work with Cheeky Records, it also
has an effortless commercial sheen.
Overly capable B-side News Readers is no sideshow. Kicking straight in with “News
flash, there ain’t no cash, s’all gone on the wall”, it is a poignant statement of
disaffection with the negative buzz created by modern media or the “blues feeders”
as it’s better put by the song. Featuring the smooth and ear-pleasing soul Sony
signed and extended Hempolics crew LSK (AKA Leigh Steven Kenny) who also
provides artwork for the upcoming album. Produced with Grippa’s own unique
rhythm, this is an unashamedly a bouncy, upbeat number whose positive step
belies the scathing political commentary within. Another summer banger.
Grippa, Harry Collier, Nubiya and Dandelion formed the band in 2010 and Caused
an instant stir with their single Serious on the Reggae Roast label but the band now
rolls out as an 9-piece at full strength, with ranks often swelled by visits from various
international talents such as Maxi Jazz and Paulo Nutini to name a few. They have
gained a cult following through their tight as a tick live performances – honed
supporting Faithless’ final ever show in front of 4000 people at Brixton academy as
well numerous small but necessarily on point venues - is the best kept secret on the
UK’s live circuit today and it’s slowly getting let out of the bag.
There is a full album of material ready to drop, all recorded in back to basics fashion
throughout the bedrooms and home studios of the band, although the weather out
might be dull London-side it’s strictly sunshine vibes, resplendent with huge hooks
and festival-friendly choruses. In the mean time Green Line looks set to appeal to
both older reggae-heads and those younger fans who’ve adopted hip-hop and
dancehall as just another part of the pop firmament, with its massive crossover
appeal and slightly wistful but feel-good charm.
This is the first release for Hempolics on BBE and is part of the slow build to their
album release

A Green Line
B News Readers

For Fans Of:
Reggae, Massive Attack, Gorillaz Available from 15.08.2014
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