Amidst all of the soca and calypso, you may be a bit at sea about one of the hottest releases of the season – Chosen Sounds’ Nautical. The local label has a track record of producing a fun fusion of local, regional and international sounds and spotlighting emerging talent, especially in the youth-friendly genres of hip hop, dancehall, and soca.
It does that once again with Nautical, which debuted during Antigua Sailing Week.
“It was our intention to provide the music to persons leaving the country during ASW 2013,” said Chosen Sounds boss Omari Harrigan, explaining, the choice of name.
“Nautical is simply to depict ‘the spread of music – by sea’,” he said.
As a marketing ploy, it’s been a success, he reported.
“There has been a few emails and Facebook comments from captains or crew who had no idea we produced this type or capacity of music and in that sense, we have achieved our goal.”
So, what type of music is it; apart from the obvious, music you can listen to when getting away from it all on the water or on the dance floor? Well, that’s the first clue; it’s electro-heavy music to get you moving.
The already popular opening track which you’ll find yourself both singing along and rocking to, Blasting Away with Jus Bus, Logiq Pryce, and Drastic, is a good example of all this.
“I really hate my nine to five, and this is why we’re blasting away,” Drastic sings on Blasting Away, which is not just about dropping out but launching yourself toward your dreams.
The international feel of the music on this song is a signature of the entire CD. Logiq, a rapper, remains an MVP of every track he’s on, and he’s on several Nautical tracks, beginning with this opener. The vocals and production by Jus Bus (working here with Torsten Stenzel) adds to the song’s popular appeal.
The next track is more Caribbean-specific, and sure to appeal to reggae lovers especially, with the stand-out guest vocals by Jah Cure who joins Them Island Boys on the track with the mostly-sweet sentiment “kiss me girl”.
These two songs make for strong openers, a trend that continues with the catchy soca-crossover track Dat Body featuring Ricardo Drue joined by Logiq and Jus Bus.
Others will have their favourites but among the other appealing tracks in this writer’s estimation are the remix of Drue’s Shawty with a guest appearance by Bunji Garlin for a dub-soca effect; Incredible the self-definitive hip hop track on which Logiq showcases his lyricism; Shamobe’s social commentary Fly on Your Way; Defend it with Golensha, Logiq and Drastic, the kind of rocking track that sticks; Too Young, lyrically light and radio friendly, an assured and age appropriate love song-slash-dance-track featuring Jamal Gordon; and Honey, which reminds those who only know Jashan Hughes as a soca artiste that she’s quite a beautiful R n B vocalist as well.
Asked to name his favourite track, Harrigan singled out Too Young, saying, “I’m particularly proud of this young artiste for being 12 and having a great sense of direction, artistry and also dedication to talent, all while still doing well in school.”
Nautical, too, is reportedly doing well.
“Most of the market gave us great kudos,” Harrigan said. “The Carnival season has taken precedence in Antigua now but outside in other countries, it has been favourably received.”