Driving drum beats, funky bass lines, guitar licks, bouncing keyboards, and an epic brass.
That's just a short description of John Brown's Body: a dynamic band hailing from Boston and Ithaca, NY, who describe their music as future roots - funk, hip hop, jazz, ska, dub, and reggae mixed together in various combinations and crooned over by soulful lead singer Elliot Martin.
A JBB live concert is something to behold. Martin's dreadlocks swing somewhere between his waist and the floor, the lights flash behind him as he sways, alternately imploring and controlling the crowd with lyrics metaphorical and rhythmic.
Drummer Tommy Benedetti plays pounding beats with the passion of a heavy metal enthusiast, weaving tightly controlled and incredibly intricate rhythms through the auditory jungle that is JBB's sound.
Organist Matthew Kofi Goodwin plays keybands and provides the melodic foundations the band builds off.
In the background, bassist Nate Edgar provides steady rhythms and then steps forward to lay down funk-induced bass lines to get the crowd charged.
Guitarist Mike Keenan appears unassuming, until he gets on stage and riffs pulsating guitar solos.
The horn section - comprised of Scott Flynn on trombone, Drew Sayers on sax, and Sam Dechenne on trumpet - punctuate each performance with bursts of loud, joyous, and masterful brass. And when they're not playing they're pretty entertaining to watch -- grooving to every song like they could just as easily be dancing in the crowd with every other fan.
JBB's sixth studio album Amplify, which was recorded in the studio of their live sound engineer Jason Jocko Randall, debuted at number one on Billboard's reggae charts.
Their latest forays into progressive reggae have excited fans and critics. They were credited in All Music Guide for playing ...the most gorgeous melodies in all of modern reggae music.
JBB goes on tour starting July 17 at the Reggae River Fest in Philadelphia, and will be playing live shows through September up and down the Eastern Seaboard.
The concert is a must for reggae enthusiasts.