Roots of Creation
Psychedelia and reggae: they usually go together as seamlessly and happily as rhythm goes with blues, as Clapton goes with Cream, as A Day at the Races goes with A Night at the Opera. So it comes as no surprise that the new album from Roots of Creation, Grateful Dub, is being pitched as a reggae tribute to the Grateful Dead that blends the best of two mellow worlds. However, most of the covers contained therein are so reimagined as to be almost unrecognizable until well into each track, failing to invoke the Dead so much as what the Dead probably sounds like in Star Trek’s “evil beard” universe, where everything is uniformly opposite from the known and expected.
The album’s lead single, “Ripple,” does feature a familiar face and sound with Jerry Garcia Band player Melvin Seals (also a guest on ROC’s previous album), who provides a mellow acoustic partner to the less expected slinky sax and harmonica runs, while a second single, “Casey Jones,” gets its pounding groove from guest vocalist Dan Kelly of Fortunate Youth. Grateful Dub dropped earlier this month, and the band will be playing it live on tour for the first time at Winstons on April 27. The bill includes Orlando, Florida reggae rockers Kash’d Out, currently signed to the label run by local band Pepper, Law Records, which just released a video for Kash’d Out’s new single “One + Off.” Also opening will be Boston dub rockers the Elovaters, fresh off recording a new album with Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad producer Danny Kalb.