Shark Fights and Dog Fights
Bieler Bros. Records
21 September 2009
by Sophia Murray
Ragga-metal remains under the sole concern of those Welsh cross over titans, Skindred. Their latest album, Shark Bites and Dog Fights, pays homage to the band’s multi-cultural concoction of rock and reggae.
‘You Can’t Stop It’ is typical Skindred. Starting off with a rock vibe, it soon descends into a more electro reggae bass line, with Benji’s potent patois-spiced vocals adding to the overall authenticity of the track. And that’s before the brief techno-inspired moment before the guitar laden chorus drops in too. There’s quite a lot going on in this song, but then that’s the angle Skindred approaches on all of their music and it works. It works.
Covers are never an easy task, but Skindred have done a really good job at covering reggae legend Eddy Grant’s ‘Electric Avenue’. They’ve not warped the song beyond recognition, but have made sure to put their own spin on the song to give it more of the vibe that rock audiences feed off.
This album is extremely clever at incorporating reggae elements into the songs without the resulting product sounding like ska. Of course, Skindred don’t just explore the reggae aspects of their music on this album – ‘Corrupted’, ‘Stand For Something’ and ‘Calling All Stations’ – which has a rather nice guitar solo – all bring it back to a more metal atheistic.
Watch the video to ‘Stand For Something’ by Skindred
Shark Bites And Dog Fights is another potent example of how Skindred are able to smash down the barriers of music not just on a cultural level, but on a creative level too. It’s a very delicate equilibrium that rocks just as well as it grooves.
Sounds Like: Dub War (durr!), Bad Brains
Top Tracks: You Can’t Stop It, Calling All Stations, Who Are You, Corrupted
Skindred – Shark Bites and Dog Fights tracklisting
Stand For Something
You Can’t Stop It
Calling All Station
Who Are You?
Days Like These