Masef: Music & Soul
By Shaun Chait
It’s refreshing listening to a band that doesn’t need an hour to get their songs out of their system. Forty five minutes is long enough, so this 35 minute debut put a smile on my face before I had pressed play. Though nothing like the cover artwork (a surfing scene) suggested, the reggae pop staple diet with sides of soul and hip hop actually sat surprisingly well on the palate. The ska/funk horns work nicely - a four-piece including a sax player is a good point of difference. There are maybe echoes of Southside Of Bombay evident here. Melodies are pleasant, the songwriting unexceptional but above acceptable. Opener Real Love serves as an upbeat statement of intent - this is good time, fun stuff. They’ve got good names on board too - the album recorded at Breaker Bay Studios with Simon Upston, mixed by Tim Farrant and mastered by Mike Gibson at Trident. Not an album you need to hear, but Masef can take heart from this being well worth the effort of releasing.