Afrikan Dreamland – Unwasted Time (Dub)
From Afrikan Dreamland – Blu-Reggae
Released on Ayo, 1983, US
Last November, we wrote about a very surprising album, by Nashville’s master of reggae (if not one of the only reggae musicians from Nashville), Kosmik Gypsy by Aashid Himons. This record, Himons‘ only solo album, blew our minds as the musician departed from Roots reggae to give his music a very curious proto-house turn (and that was in 1982…). However, this oddball should not overshadow the rest of his work, with his band Afrikan Dreamland.
The band was short-lived but quite prolific, as they released 3 albums and a bunch of singles between 1981 and 1983. The fact that they were a reggae band from Nashville is more than an anecdote as they borrowed many elements from Blues and Country music, and the result is pretty unique (check their debut album Jah Message).
That being said, the song we’re talking about today is pure roots dub and does not sound like any kind of crossover between reggae, country & blues. Instead, it’s an absolutely out-of-space dub which is somewhat reminiscent of some of the craziest dubby explorations released in the UK on labels like On-U Sound, around the same era (think about Prince Far-I, African Head Charge or Suns of Arqa).
In fact, it is quite safe to compare Himons to some great dub producers as Unwasted Time is a super tight demonstration of his mastering of the mix and the science of effects. Even if the sound of the Nashville musician is way more roots than any of Sherwood‘s productions, the mix denotes a shared will to throw the listener off the balance. Spaced-out…