Mei Tei Sho Lo Ba

Lo Ba, from France’s Mei Tei Sho, is a truly unique combination of influences that is unmistakably the product of an urban, multicultural environment. Mei Tei Sho combine dub, rock, hip-hop, Anatolian, Senegalese and North African influences. Sound a bit like a laundry list? Jean Gomis, one of the most charismatic front-men of the last several years, concentrates all the diversity into an extraordinarily focused, angry, tender personality. Imagine Mutabaruka fronting Rage Against the Machine with a far greater sense of melody, dynamics and overall musical range. No song stays in the same place from beginning to the end: the slower tunes like the haunting ballad "Ghost Friend” with guest vocalist Shusheela Rahman, build into noisy guitar and electronic workouts. Hip-hop tracks like "Never Money Today” start with slightly unimpressive rapping and become fierce rockers after two minutes. Best are the tunes with North African influences where double time metallic percussion weaves in and out of the complex rhythm section. This is Mei Tei Sho’s fifth album, and showcases a truly accomplished and nimble band who sound like they’ve worked hard to develop their unique sound. This is some of the very best progressive dub France has to offer these days. (Jarring Effects)