Sunday, February 23, 2014
Passafire Are Tangled In Vines
If reggae can rock and rock can reggae than Passafire are the reigning kings of the ability to do both. Their album Vines is the perfect blend of hard alternative and reggae blended in a 90's sort of way. They're a bit funk metal, a bit reggae and at times more Chili Peppers than Flea could hope to be. These guys bring a California vibe to the island sound and despite not being from either place Passafire make it all work and sound like they were stranded on an island w/instruments to keep them entertained.
Vines veers from being heavy and crunchy one minute to becoming chilled out, dubbed out, and lost in a haze the next. This record is straight out of the 90's hard alternative scene and gives Sublime a good run for their money with the whole American reggae thing. Truth be told Vines isn't half bad and despite it's retro feel, I believe the record works because Passafire have stumbled on the perfect combination of darkness and light, heaviness and mellowness, and crunch with catchiness. As a result of this delicate balance nothing ever sounds stale or too far into one musical genre and Passafire skirt the edges of it all like a tightrope walker.
Far from a cliche reggae record, Vines proves that reggae is a flexible genre and can genuflect in ways you might not expect. This is the perfect Spring Break record that every frat boy and college kid needs to have in his collection by March!