Rebelution – Count Me In
1.) Count Me In
3.) More Love
4.) Lost In Dreams
5.) Fade Away
6.) Hate To Be The One (ft Collie Buddz)
7.) Notice Me
8.) Roots Reggae Music (ft Don Carlos)
9.) Counterfeit Love
10.) Against The Grain
The Pier Album Rating:
Release Date: June 10, 2014
Record Label: 87 Music / Easy Star Records
Official Website: Rebelution Website
They are without a doubt the biggest band to ever claim Santa Barbara, California as their hometown. This roots and reggae band, Rebelution, has exploded in popularity over the past few years, with the band now regularly selling out amphitheaters. This group has definitely come a long way from their first album, Courage to Grow, which was released in 2007. The new album, Count Me In, debuted on the Billboard Top 200 in the top 20, and was also the #1 Billboard Reggae album. When the band isn’t recording, they are touring, and that is just what they are doing to support this new album. The album features collaborations from very known and respected figures such as Collie Buddz and Don Carlos. Altogether, the 11 tracks of this album provide for a very unique experience that every Rebelution fan should try.
Rebelution’s new album, Count Me In, is a good sequel to the band’s previous effort, Peace of Mind. The band does not really deviate from their signature style of groovy bass lines and melodic horn riffs. This is not a bad thing, because if the people loved the sound from their last album, why change it? However, there are some important distinctions between this album and the last that are worthy of mentioning.
At first, “Count Me In,” and “De-Stress” seem to be prime examples of the band using the exact style of the previous album. To the careful ear, “De-Stress,” has the same upbeat feeling as the band’s infamous, “Sky Is The Limit,” where even the tempo is the same. Not to worry though, because the rest of the album takes slight turns to distinguish itself from the sounds we are used to.
In a first for the band, there is a radical shift to electronic effects in the song, “Lost In Dreams.” They try to go for a spacey sound, and the producer managed to do this successfully, especially during the chorus. One blatant change was the shift to the electric drum set for this song. At times, especially near the end of the song, during the breakdown, the fills sort of run over each other to create a unique style of drumming. Overall, the band did a good job in their execution – This is one of the highlights of the album.
Another first takes place during, “Hate To Be The One” (ft Collie Buddz), where the band uses heavy Latin-music influences to create an entirely different sound than what you’re use to hearing. The results seem natural, not forced, and this makes the song a very important step forward for Rebelution as they step out of their comfort zone in an effort to try and hone in on other genres of music.
One of the reasons Rebelution became famous is because they come up with lyrics that reach the listeners’ souls, and this happens during “Counterfeit Love,” where the lyrics accuse those who are only interested in money and fame. This comes right at that point in Rebelution’s career where they are famous and are well off financially. The only bad thing is the increase of counterfeit lovers, sort of like a different strand of the Elvis Syndrome, where the members of Rebelution are now faced with the daunting task of figuring out who’s real and who’s digging for gold. Fans get to be in the band’s shoes for at least this song, the most sincere of the album.
The rest of the album unfortunately doesn’t do much for me. I found myself either completely wanting to skip the songs, or making connections to how a song sounds too similar to another song off of the previous album. Nevertheless, the album is good and will be something that fans will enjoy listening to. It’ll be interesting to see if Rebelution changes it up completely for the next album, or if they’ll decide to cling on to the sounds that have made them famous.
Written & Reviewed By: Juan Barragan
[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]