A mysterious studio collective of upstate New Yorkers affiliated with the roots reggae band John Brown’s Body, 10 Ft. gets deeply into the lazy, hazy rasta ’70s dub groove of Lee Scratch Perry, King Tubby, and Channel One. Rumor has it that the brains behind 10 FT. Ganja is Craig Welsch, who began as soundman for JBB before diving into the studio with both analog feet. Remarkably clean, buoyant and musical, with just the right edge of trippyness, the songs were reportedly recorded live to two-track and mixed on the fly, fresh as morning dew on da kine buds.
The CD opens with the juicy “100 Lb. Weight,” a melodica workout in the finest Augustus Pablo mode (as is the closing track “Righteous Dub”), and cruises from there: “Ganja Plane Rider,” “Let the Music Hit,” and “Mercy” (you’d swear Bob himself was singing this one, with the I-Threes answering sweetly) feature excellent Jamaican-syle vocals, “Chanting Nyabinghi” is deepened with intriguing use of strings, “Wide Open” is a bright summer day punctuated with lightly-stinging treated guitar, and “Kneel At the Feet” is a stately stroll down ‘bone street, with sax and trumpet in poignant support.
Golden Age reggae isn’t dead my bredren, it’s just moved to upstate New York, and exceptional cover art by Chris Capotosto completes the package.