Tell Them Again – Riddim Tuffa ft. El Fata (Tuffa Dubs Records, sick UK)
Tell Them Again – out on 7″ or MP3 – is the first release for rising Edinburgh-based production crew Riddim Tuffa on their Tuffa Dubs UK label. It’s a debut single that firmly announces their arrival on the new-school digital reggae scene.
Like Jahtari, Scotch Bonnet and Maffi, the Riddim Tuffa sound clearly draws massive influence from the music of Jamaica’s digital dancehall revolution in the mid-1980s. However Riddim Tuffa’s productions have a slightly cleaner, more modern aesthetic than their contemporaries.
Tell Them Again sees them collaborate with London-based vocalist El Fata on the Ruler riddim. The riddim employs a satisfyingly thick bass line, a two chord minor key skank, an austere keys part and a stripped-back drum beat propelled by some interesting percussion samples. It’s a simple but very effective formula which provides plenty of space El Fata to excel.
To me, El Fata is one of the most exciting reggae vocalists to emerge in recent years. Originally hailing from Nigeria, El Fata has a wonderful ability to smoothly blend uniquely African harmonies with rapid fire fast-chat – and this tune exemplifies that. His subject matter is conscious but quirky as he ‘tells us again’ to hold on to our humanity and forget about Babylon’s glitter and gold. It really is a lovely tune, slightly addictive even.
Expect big things from both Riddim Tuffa and the one El Fata in the future. In the meantime, bag this record If you can!
Naram/reggae selector and producer from Aotearoa,New Zealand.