Coventry Arches Venue
23rd December 2016
Two days before Christmas, I finished work at midday and Roddy is playing down the road. Perfect. After a couple of pints in a packed Irish pub we wander down to the venue and reminisce with old friends that appear from nowhere. There are Punks, Skinheads and Rudeboys. Rockers and Crusties, to say that the crowd is diverse is an understatement.
Rooted n Booted start off with an apology for not having a bassist and a plea to anyone who knows a bassist to get in touch. They explain that the set will be softer and more acoustic than usual. Unfortunately, this is the first time I’ve caught them and the music doesn’t feel complete without the bass. It’s reggae and ska based with angry lyrics, full of social commentary. The sound is laid back and cool and, I feel, less immediate than it would be with a complete rhythm section. They stand out by having a mixed group of male and female. The nod to Linton Kwesi Johnson shows class and they engage the audience. A good performance.
Dub Jam Force are punk, snotty and loud. They play protest songs and they play them well. The tempo moves up and down giving the sound an edge. The music is dark, menacing and rock hard. There is a reggae tinge but more along the lines of the nineties crusty bands like Culture Shock than what Rooted N Booted brought. The massive slabs of guitar throw the sound into a punk tinged area. Alongside the Culture Shock reference there is a tinge of the Levellers passion and sound here too, these guys could be massive.
Dub Jam Force
Rooted N Booted
Dub Jam Forceare on Facebook.
All words by Adrian Bloxham all pictures by Martin Ward.