Negus is a title of Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie, the Almighty God of the Rastafarian movement, and none pays him more eloquent homage than Ras Michael
and his group, the Sons of Negus. This is the beat of the heart, based on the original "instrument of ten strings," the hand-beaten drum. On Dadawah
in 1975, Michael
took a religious ceremonial gathering as the basis for an album of elegant poetry and raw, visceral power. Later, eschewing minimalism, such works as Promised Land Sounds
added electronics and produced a primeval psychedelia without compare in Jamaican history. This is the sound of the Roots Church in the 21st century, highly charged hymns for humanity's future survival.