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Album Review

In 2002, shortly after he released the excellent Run Come Save Me, Roots Manuva followed with the remix record, Dub Come Save Me, which trumped one of his best original LPs to become the seminal LP of his career. Duppy Writer is another remix record, this time with Wrongtom replacing the good Lord Gosh (aka Roots Manuva himself) as main producer. (Additional production is prevalent, though, including Steve Dub, Toddla T, Lotek's Wayne Bennett, and Roots himself.) Though always rooted in dub and reggae, Roots has never had this type of backing in his career, a skeletal, half-step digi-dancehall sound that suits his voice perfectly. Of course, there's plenty of dub on display too, as well as the organ-led rocksteady for "Worl' a Mine." Duppy Writer ably serves either of two purposes, an alternate career retrospective or a remix record of taste and distinction.


Born: 1972 in Stockwell, London, England

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

British rapper/producer Rodney Smith established himself as Roots Manuva in the late '90s and began releasing a series of highly regarded albums through Big Dada. Smith's work was firmly rooted in dub and ragga but also incorporated much of the trip-hop style often associated with Ninja Tune, the U.K. imprint that often distributed Big Dada releases. The MC debuted in 1999 with Brand New Second Hand, a promising album that garnered a sizable amount of attention from the international hip-hop crowd...
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Duppy Writer, Roots Manuva
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