10ft. Ganja Plant, Bushrock

Anthony Mark Happel

10ft. Ganja Plant, Bushrock [ROIR]

This is the fifth album on ROIR by this fifth generation reggae band (where does the time go?), which is made up of members of John Brown’s Body, for dudes who don’t know. And despite that discography, they are still pretty damn obscure, even in the indie rock realm. This time out they are joined on vocals by Kyle McDonald, from the L.A.-based band Slightly Stoopid, and you can bet dollars to donuts that this guest shot has definitely elevated Mr. McDonald’s overall status in hip music circles, since his own band is actually kind of a joke, even in the L.A. stoner scene.

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10ft. Ganja Plant practices a smooth, and mostly unremarkable, late 60s/early 70s-style workmanlike dub reggae, that mixes dub parts and reggae parts in various forms and mutations, and usually hits the target, if not the bulls eye. “Soon Come” is a prime example of how well the dub effect plays in their hands, and “Too Much Gun A Bust” is fairly serious, soulful reggae, which obviously owes a large debt to Robert Nesta Marley, and maybe Joe Higgs, not to mention the appropriately-titled “Wailin’.” The title song has a sure hint of a Peter Tosh vibe going on in there. Sure, they’re practiced and polished at what they do, and this is not necessarily just for the stoners, but there’s really nothing new under the sun, here or anywhere. They’re not re-inventing the wheel, and some of the non-dub inflected material is just too “on-the-nose,” or they get caught up in the pop-reggae thing, but, having said that, it could be a hell of a lot worse than this. They’re on tour with Snoop Dogg this summer. Blaze up, America!

 
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