on 20 December 2009
Ijahman Levi was born Trevor Sutherland in 1946 in Kingston, Jamaica.
He put out some superb roots reggae in the 70s, and this album is a wonderful example of his high level of quality control during this time. The band is tight, the melodies are complex, and the songs extend into beautiful 'dubby' instrumentals. Although it seems like you are only getting an 'EP', the songs are around six or seven minutes long.
'Are We a Warrior' came out in 1979, and is the perfect partner to his 1978 album, 'Haile I Hymn'. Both albums are classic Ijahman, with highlights from the earlier album including the sublime 'Jah Heavy Load' and 'I Am a Levi'.
'Are We a Warrior' features a very strong set of songs, from the beautiful and powerful title track, to the brooding 'Miss Beverley', and the righteous 'The Church'. Ijahman also takes time out from the reggae on this album to record 'Two Sides of Love', a gentle soul song.
This is vintage Rasta roots music at its best - Ijahman has the ability to run sweet spiritual lyrics and righteous tones over deep, rumbling rhythms.
I stumbled across this collection of beautiful, chilled slow reggae songs back in 1980. They sound just as fresh today. Not being a fan of the genre I was pleasently surprised by these blissed out tunes. Seven tracks in total, most songs run for 5 minuites or more. The vocal is a soulful as anything I've heard and the lyrics are about peace and love. What's not to like? If you want to expand you horizons and seiously impress your friends, but this amazingly beautiful album.