Opening act by The Congos: the band that worked also with Lee “Scratch” Perry in the seventies showed us to be still groovy, making us feel the african roots. Heart of the Congos (1977) is the album they played through dub explorations and intelligent riffs, warming us up for the long night. It’s always hard to make a good beginning for who’s playing first, but here at Rototom we saw many artists able to gather the crowd in front of the stage only by using good music. However, we have to say that the european audience is always demanding, especially for what concerns the sing-along.
We saw then the Gentleman’s Dub Club, a band from Leeds (Uk) that entered on stage carrying a european flag, reminding us about the recent referendum. Surely representatives of the young generation, they chose the setting of the Rototom - made of peace, love and unity - to do this important call for unity in Europe, against walls and separations. They played in almost all the biggest european festivals and it was their first time at Rototom, they brought us an energetic sound and great tunes such as Emergency, Music Is the Girl I Love.
In the meanwhile Chalart58 from Barcelona was breaking other walls, sneaking into reggae music with electronic vibes of his own production. Deep basses as usual at the Dub Academy, plus lyrical fantasies composed by Iration Steppas featuring Mackie Banton.
The legendary Inner Circle brought us back to the rockers’ days, showing to be still Bad Boys on stage. We listened to the all-classics such as We A Rockers, Sweet Jamaica and Tenement Yard. Even without Jacob Miller this band keeps entertaining massive audiences worldwide and here in Europe, because of the great success achieved here with Sweat (A La La La La Long), they never forget to play it! They did such a good show that the dj Freddie Krueger had to spin their tunes again during the break.
In the end the awaited live of Dub Inc, the band that represents more the french people in the audience. Thanks to the great singers Hakim Meridja (aka Bouchkour) and Aurelien Zohou (aka Komlan) they achieve a remarkable relation with the public. All the songs from Paradise (2013) and also from old releases such as Afrikya (2010) are still an important part of the playlist, but only to satisfy the people completely. Their “french touch” consists in a great mix of north-african, arabic melodies with the best french hip-hop influences for what concerns lyrics. We remember their collaboration with the Dancehall star Skarra Mucci in They Want, then for great hits such as Better Run, Metissage and Sounds Good.