NST & The Soul Sauce ‎– Heaven Is Here / Song For Rico

Eastern Standard Sounds ‎– ESS-MC-01
Cassette, Mini-Album

Tracklist Hide Credits

A1 Heaven Is Here 4:02
A2 Heaven Is Dub
Mixed By – Smiley Song
A3 Doo Man RIver (Live) 6:04
B1 Song For Rico 5:00
B2 Dub For Rico 5:00
B3 Song For Rico (Live) 5:00
B4 Highway-Ramjam 5:50



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February 27, 2016

Reggae music is a special thing. Reggae’s roots run deep and narrow in tiny Jamaica but her vines have twisted across the globe enchanting people without regard of history or culture. Seoul, South Korea has long incubated a small pocket of the global scene. The musicians here don’t get much buzz outside of east Asia, which is a shame. However, after listening to the debut album from NST and the Soul Sauce, a Korean-reggae “supergroup” if there ever was one, it’s clear this small scene may soon be making a big splash.

The group first formed in early 2015 as session support for frontman and bassist Noh Seon Teck’s solo project. The band has decades of total experience playing reggae in Korea and touring around Asia. After finishing up, they figured they had a good thing going so NST and the Soul Sauce was born.

NST and the Soul Sauce manage to cram a lot of musical style and swagger into little more than 30 minutes of music. Each track was recorded one take with no overdubs. This gives the album an authentic and natural vibe. There are no distracting post production effects… just good music, executed well.

The seven track album has a tasty sampling of jammy reggae jazz, dubs, phrenetic live cuts and catchy hooks. The first song, Heaven is Here, lays down a happy, lazy groove. The first few seconds sound very much like Lee Perry’s Upsetters: the sound is full and the instrumentation is just right. Following close behind is the dub version by Smiley Song

After that is a psychedelic jam inspired by an old Korean pop song called Doo Man River. The bass line drives this bus and everyone else in the band hangs on for dear life.

The next three tracks are various versions of one tune, Song for Rico. The vibe is straight off any album from the song’s namesake, Rico Rodriguez. It’s got the hook, the groove and the jazzy solos. This particular dub recorded with one take by Kang Teck Hyun, the band’s drummer.

The final (bonus) track is another jam called Highway Ram Jam. The star of this tune is Lee Jong Min on organ. It’s fun, bouncy reggae with a pop twist that morphs into a smooth lovers rock complete with violin serenade.