Its hard to believe that what I’m about to review is a ‘Debut’ of sorts, Sé Fire have been kicking jams and distorting boundaries for well over 10 years now. The Bristol collective first came to light with the meeting of Producer/Rapper Sosé and wordsmith Mistafire exchanging gritty vocabularies way back in the day, from that point the crew began to developed and carve itself until it consisted of vocalist Jamileh Lee, Engineer Ollie Weers from Chemical Dub Theory & turntablist’s Dj Snafu. From 2001-2009 a distinctive sound echoed around Bristol and its fellow cities, sending shivering ripples down the spine of UKHH, almost as a proverbial acid tab on the tongue’s of an already booming culture.
After disappearing briefly without any of their musical adventures having ever graced the public officially, Durkle Disco approached the collective with an offer of extracting new & old material from the cosmos and helping their debut “Match In The Ocean” come to form.
One of the most prevalent qualities on this album comes in the form of the production, Sosé has chosen an extremely atmospheric approach on many of the tracks, rather then diluting production with heavy kicks and a reoccurring sampled rift, he has really expanded horizons by setting temperaments within his music, allowing a fluidity in-between certain percussions really opens opportunities for the verbalists to further concrete a specific emotion.
Sosé & Mistafire’s message throughout this album is nothing less than real talk, there’s not an ounce of egotistical bullshit or any playing up to the booth to gain “respect” as idolized figures, with a direct influence coming from what happens behind these gritty curtains of society, “Poison” eases us gently onto the motives and direction this album takes, with a collection of cracking cuts rolling between stretched brass and piercing kicks the two warm themselves up with solid verses.
“Peace” whips the vibe up slightly with an acknowledgment towards particular strife’s that have had to be faced in one walk or another. “Red Lights” see’s the first appearance of vocalist Jamileh contributing a hauntingly soothing hook on a track dealing with the prospects of war. “Tell No lies” offers some of dopest deliverance’s of the album, a direct middle finger salute to our corrupt system takes control played over a neck snapping drum loop and piano keys. “Speed of Time” & “Dawn of the Dead” are almost the eye of the storm, allowing us to really get to grips with some of the incredible wordplays being woven, I was really receptive towards what was meant to be taken from these two tracks, “Dawn of the Dead” really struck a chord, dealing with sensitive topics such as substance abuse needs a delicate touch, both rappers caress the relaxed dub track with intricate verse’s. “In Every” is no doubt my favorite piece, this is one of those tracks I could have playing inside my skull for an eternity and still find a new way to love it after each listen, Jemileh’s vocals sent shivers down my spine on the first listen, coupled with an astoundingly multi-layered piece of production which invites you into pure moments of serenity, until your confronted by an amazing tribal like finale.
“The Great Escapist’s” catches the only feature coming from Sir Plus who fits in nicely with the aesthesis of the album. It boils down with title track “Match In the Ocean” & the pinnacle track “ Steppa” with some well chosen cuts tied behind a calming production Sosé & Mistafire offer our last glance into thoughtful lyricism before “Steppa” crashes in with a foot stomping cluster fuck of dub reggae and Dubstep infused goodness, I couldn’t of asked for a better ending to a superb album.
Review By Rikki James @Jamzeeze