Review: Mystic Roots – Sushi Sampler

Review: Mystic Roots – Sushi Sampler

Mystic Roots – Sushi Sampler
1.) Earthquake (remix)
2.) Girl Next Door- Marco
3.) Cali-Hi (w/Zion of the Green)
4.) Who’s Fooling Who- The California Kidd (w/ Marty Dread)
5.) Sweet Sinsemilla (remix)
6.) Blaze It Up
7.) Lonely Road
8.) Wunulu
9.) April Dub
10.) Music Reggae (fire remix)
11.) Have You Ever Dub- cootdog (w/ Mystic Roots)
12.) There’s A Place- Top Shelf (w/ Stevie Culture)
13.) Funky Reggae Party- The California Kidd (w/ cootdog, Marko & Ras Cricket)
14.) Tenement Yard
15.) Drink To That (Live in S. Korea)- Mystic Roots
16.) It Stoned Me- Marko
17.) More Than A Feeling- Top Shelf
18.) Love Hangover
19.) Bohemian
20.) Reflection

The Pier Album Rating:

Release Date: June 20th, 2012
Record Label: Stay Positive Productions
Official Website: Mystic Roots Website

Group Background:
California quintet Mystic Roots formed in the mid 90’s, although they did not release their first full-length album, Constant Struggle, until 2000. Their debut album gained significant notoriety charting in iTunes Top 100 albums, selling 10,000 copies independently, and pocketing the award for Best Reggae/Pop Album at the LA Music Awards.

Mystic Roots most recent studio album, Cali-Hi, dropped in 2010, and acquired similar, if not even greater recognition than their release at the turn of the century, ranking in the top 20 reggae albums on a handful of notable charts. Their endeavors, however, have not been limited to the studio. Mystic Roots has played over 1,500 shows at a wide variety of venues and festivals across the country in an effort to spread their music to the ears of their fans. They are also in the process of completing their third album, titled CampFire.

Album Review:
Mystic Roots has a rather original sound, rooted in Reggae with undertones of hip-hop, dancehall, and a slew of other genres that make their way into the tracks along the way. The Sushi Sampler provided them with the proper venue to explore and incorporate these genres in collaboration with other artists to create a reggae fusion sampler that expands on vibes of their studio material.

A refreshing element that the sampler provides is an exquisite sense of continuity and transition, which is not often the case with other studio albums. When listening to the album in it’s entirety, I was often unable to pinpoint where one song ended and the other began because of the smooth and flawless exchange between tracks. Earthquake (remix) opens the curtain with the laid back vibes and irresistible vocals that continued throughout the first seven or so tracks. The remaining portion of the track list, however, is riddled with remixes and dubs as opposed to the smoother melodies of songs like “WuNuLu”. Fueled by synthesizers and thudding beats, the second half of the Sushi Sampler bore a rather intense contrast to the introductory tracks.

To close out the Sushi Sampler, Mystic Roots included a reggae re-hash of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody, which was no doubt unexpected. Being that it was a legendary track near opposite their reggae roots, I thought they did a commendable job with an adaptation that may have proved to be difficult given the size-able difference in genre.

Written & Reviewed By: Jason Gallagher

[Editors Note: All reviews are reflective of the album in it’s entirety, from start to finish. These reviews are the honest opinion of each writer/reviewer, expressing their feedback as a genuine fan of the music. Each star rating reflects their review of the album, not the band. Music is subjective. Regardless of the review or star rating, we encourage you to listen to the music yourself & form your own opinion. Spread the awareness of all music in its art & contribution]