Flashmag Digizine Edition Issue 107 July 2020 - Page 167

It's been almost a decade since reggae and dancehall legend Buju Banton last dropped an album, but now he's back with the vibrant Upside Down 2020.

Featuring appearances from Pharrell, Stefflon Don, Stephen Marley, and John Legend, Upside Down 2020 is his first project since his release from prison in 2018. Featuring the previously released singles "Steppa," "Memories," and "Trust," the record sees Banton in top form as though he never left. Blending sounds both modern and throwback, it's a refreshing reintroduction to an artist who has undoubtedly influenced countless musicians during his career.

Banton celebrated his return to the worldwide stage following his performance at Kingston’s Famed National Stadium. The Long Walk to Freedom Concert was one of the biggest music events in Jamaica’s history and was the launching pad for the tour of the same name.

The star’s subsequent announcement that he had signed with Roc Nation was followed with Banton releasing four brand-new songs, with accompanying music or lyric videos, “Steppa,” “Trust,” “Memories” featuring John Legend and the most recent release “Blessed”. The album of 20 titles was released June 26th 2020.

Burning deep in Girl Friday's music is an unquenchable will to survive. The LA-based band don't blunt the impact of the themes they work through in their ferocious, knotty rock songs, but they don't let the more harrowing aspects of being alive and young in the 21st century daunt them, either. Dystopian shades of post-punk and noise rock abound alongside abundant optimism on Girl Friday’s arresting debut LP, Androgynous Mary. The world is a hellscape, but the four of them are in it together.

UP side Down Buju Banton

M.. ward Migration Stories

Norah Jones’ seventh solo studio album grew out of her acclaimed singles series, as the unreleased songs unexpectedly congealed into an album of tremendous depth and beauty. Featuring a range of collaborators from Brian Blade to Jeff Tweedy, Pick Me Up Off The Floor is connected by the sly groove of her piano trios, lyrics that confront loss and portend hope, and a mood that leans into darkness before ultimately finding the light. For Variey “Pick Me Up Off the Floor” is a cohesive journey reflecting both tragically and sweetly on the amorphous cloud of heartache that lingers in these moments of pain, offering a hand to help us out of the fog.

Release June 12, 2020


StudioElectric Lady Studios, NYC, Brooklyn Recording, Brooklyn, NY, Reservoir Studios, NY,

Rainbow Star, Brooklyn, NY



LabelBlue Note/Capitol

ProducerNorah Jones, (Jeff Tweedy)

Flashmag July 2020 www.flashmag.net

Androgynous Mary -Girl Friday

Pick me up the Floor -Norah Jones