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Where We Come From

Popcaan

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Album Review

With a sound as charming and as accessible as his name, dancehall singer Popcaan went from being the man behind the sweet and massive Jamaican hit "Only One She Want" to the unlikely head of Vybz Kartel's Gaza Empire, a position that landed in his lap after Kartel got life in prison on murder charges. That's quite a journey up to this, his debut album, but if Where We Come From comes off a bit aloof and electro for such a Gaza past, know that the singles-driven dancehall scene is less concerned with albums than other genres, and this isn't 100 percent Gaza anyway. Popcaan's debut lands on Dre Skull's Mixpak label and is produced in total by the Brooklyn-based Skull, so consider it a simple slice of the Popcaan picture or some exciting stepping out for the dancehall singer, because it is both. It features a Diplo-busy beat underneath, and yet the great "Love Yuh Bad" is a Skull and Popcaan cut that could hit for the singer back home, while the uplifting "Everything Nice" shines as bright as Kartel's hit "Life Sweet," just with some deeper, Brooklyn bass. The twerking club cut "Hustle" and the dark, Three 6 Mafia-like landscape of "Ghetto (Tired of Crying)" aren't the kind of tones tourists bring home from JA, but Skull's U.S. vision of dancehall doesn't alienate the singer at all, as tales of ghetto life and the struggle to get out fuel his lyrics. If a DJ needs to segue from Gary Numan to Sean Paul, the bloopy "Addicted" might be his only hope, and by the closing title track, the album has gone full reggae-pop and worked in something global and positive for Wyclef's next mix set. Still, without something like "Only One She Want," this is a debut by default and not an all-encompassing coming out party, but Skull and Popcaan are simpatico on Where We Come From, so love it for what it is.

Customer Reviews

Instant Classic!!!!!!

Popcaan made a classic…….big up Popi and Mixpak!!!!!!! #TR888

HotSkull

Album Way Up!! Love mi hotskull...

Wow! Great Debut.

I didn't expect Popcaan to disappoint, and he didn't. Big up Dre Skull and Popcaan, the album shot!

Biography

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '00s, '10s

With both a bona fide genre smash and genre-bending work in his back pocket, singer Popcaan is a Jamaican star who began his dancehall journey in 2007. It was then that he joined Vybz Kartel's posse and was introduced to the Jamaican public via Kartel's shows at festivals like Reggae Sumfest and Sting. Singles like "It Nuh Work So," "Jah Jah Protect Me," "Hot Grabba," and "Gangsta City" helped make Popcaan a regular feature of Jamaican radio, but in 2010 he became a global reggae name when he landed...
Full Bio
Where We Come From, Popcaan
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Customer Ratings