For those who remember dancehall in the '90s, Mr. Lexx aka Lexxus (aka Spragga Lexxus for about two seconds, if memory serves) is a veteran deejay who appeared on the scene about the same time the Ward 21 flow was the new shit in Jamaica. His career has definitely gotten a laser-powered shot in the arm recently from his feature alongside Santigold on “Hold The Line,” but it seems like he is making the most of the opportunity to demonstrate to his dancehall peers that there is life after Major Lazer. One of the best examples is “Holiday”—a good one to keep on rotation as we slide into Christmas bashment—but there’s also “Transform Ya” which finds him riffing off the heavily-synthesized robot voices in the Chris Brown riddim.
The same beat provides the ideal platform for Leftside to do his eerily accurate auto-tune impressions of Chris, Weezy, 50 cent and Jay-Z—although for unexplained reasons the Hov-bot seems to have the slightest hint of Australian accent in his slang, like the token white guy villain in a Bollywood movie. Never one to be out-conceptualized on a one-off concept song, Busy puts his own original spin on the sounds of cybernetic activity with “Like a Robot” and if this continues, robot voices are about to be for Jamaican music in 2010 what wheeling a motorcycle into the studio was back in the days of “S-90 Skank”.
GP81 Transformers blend
Business Class f. Mr. Lexx, “Holiday” (Business Class)
Mr. Lexx, “Watch Me Transform Ya” (Federation)
Leftside aka Dr Evil, “Transformers remix ”(Keep Left)
Busy Signal, “Like a Robot” (Stainless/DJ Karim)
Bounty Killer, “They Don’t Know Me” (Clothesline riddim / Romeich Records)
Jamtech Foundation f. Voltage, “Park the 9” (Voltage mix)
Download: Ghetto Palms Transformers Blend
The Transformer-style Lexx tune is a Federation sound thing, and “Holiday” is one of the inaugural releases from Business Class—a production crew/digital label in which Federation’s top selector Max Glazer is heavily involved. It comes as no surprise, therefore, that the first few tunes feature artists he has taken under his wing, like Badda Badda Gal Natalie Storm, Zimboo and of course Lexxus. If the sterling production values of this tune—and the left field approach of the Zimboo and Nats outings—are any indication, Business Class should be a force to be reckoned with in this emerging post-human electrohall paradigm.