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As always Michael Franti is politically motivated but the musician and poet is also spreading the word of love more than ever on his sixth album with band Spearhead. There's


I Got Love For You

which bounces along merrily, the party dancehall of

Say Hey (I Love You)

finds Franti taking on the Jamaican reggae pop style of Ziggy Marley; and the stunning

All I Want Is You

has a shuddering dub skank and a ghostly riff akin to the Police's


. It's love, love, love and a long way from the reactionary mood of his former industrial hip-hop bands the Beatnigs and the Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy.


Although, as the title suggests

All Rebel Rockers

isn't all warm fuzzies. The bass-laden stomper


with a tough Clash-like groove and chant of "Let the rhythm hit 'em", is one of the heaviest Spearhead songs yet.

Also on this album, Spearhead's catchy hip-hop and funk standards give way to a reggae and dancehall base with it being recorded in Jamaica by producers Sly & Robbie.


Rude Boy's Back In Town

, a song which almost stops many times thanks to the beautifully lazy beats, he name checks Tame Iti and Tuhoe; there's the lashing beats of

A Little Bit of Riddim

; and a world music influence on

High Low

where Franti duets with Congolese singer Marie Daulne from Zap Mama.

Michael Franti & Spearhead play at the Powerstation on October 7 and if

All Rebel Rockers

is anything to go by it will be a loved up and skanking show.

Scott Kara