NOW THINGS: LISTEN TO THE BEST NEW CARIBBEAN SOUNDS ON APPLE MUSIC

After a two-week break, LargeUp’s Now Things playlist returns with the latest from Vybz, Alkaline, Tarrus Riley and Ding Dong, plus a big collab from Jus Now and Busy Signal, 2018 soca from Nailah Blackman and Voice and a haunting revamp of a Ken Boothe classic.

Run tune below, and listen to all of our playlists over on our Apple Music channel here.

Jus Now & Dismantle ft Busy Signal, “Fire (Spotie)

Busy Signal jumps on Jus Now and Dismantle’s “Spotie,” a riddim which originally started as a dubplate for festival sets. OutKast fans may recognise the horns sampled in the track as “SpottieOttieDopaliscious,” from Big Boi and Andre 3000’s classic third album, Aquemini. — Gibbo

Vybz Kartel, “How”

Vybz Kartel spews advice about the usual ‘badmind’ and fake friends on this one. The song sounds almost like a jingle— a dancehall jingle that is, as the incarcerated deejay inserts the phrase, “blah blah blah blah” in the chorus. Before you know it, you too will be singing, “blah blah blah blah…” throughout the day! — Keva Evans

Alkaline, “Suave”

Dancehall’s youngest superstar highlights his musical successes on the mellow All Night riddim. He also lauds himself on being suave, which he pronounces “suavey.” This good-humored pronunciation makes for a memorable chorus. Thumbs up, Alkaline! — Keva Evans

Ding Dong, “Man A Zombie”

Ding Dong has worked hard to advance his skills as an artist since the release of his breakout hit “Bad Man Forward, Bad Man Pull Up” in 2006. This single on Anju Blvxx’s Zombie Riddim serves as proof of the dancer/deejay’s development and versatility. — Gibbo

Tarrus Riley, “Graveyard”

Tarrus puts a conscious spin on Tarik “Rvssian” Johnston’s Moscow riddim. Showcasing his street knowledge with a rundown of the most volatile places in Jamaica, he cautions against the gunman lifestyle. This is a positive tune that we can also ‘buss a dance’ to. — Keva Evans

Mavado, “Red Rose”

Mavado was a staple on Stephen “Di Genius” McGregor’s dancehall riddims back when the super producer was still dropping several per year. The pair reunite for “Red Rose” to remind dancehall fans of what they have been missing. Let’s hope it’s not a one-off. — Gibbo

Charly Black, “Future Queen”

Charly Black has been at the top of his game for some time now, and he doesn’t seem to be falling off. This reggae jam showcases Charly’s melodic prowess, and his knack for catchy choruses. I can’t help but sing along whenever I hear this song! — Keva Evans

Dre Island, “Just Wanna Be Free”

Dre Island’s stock is on a high right now, thanks to the success of “We Pray,” his collaboration with Popcaan. “Just Wanna Be Free,” on Delly Ranx’s Cotton Swab Riddim, showcases Dre’s storytelling ability, heightening anticipation for his forthcoming release, Project Now I Rise. — Gibbo

Dre Island Jamaica 2016

Foresta and Royal Blu feat. Runkus, “SinG With God”

Royal Blu presents an alternative to dancing with the devil in “sinG With God,” the title track from his EP with German producer Foresta. A guest verse from Runkus provides extra food for thought. — Gibbo

Voice, “Year For Love”

Reigning International Soca Monarch Aaron “Voice” St Louis calls for peace and healing as we prepare to enter 2018. Upendo (the Swahili word meaning love provides) is an apt name for the riddim this single appears on, which was produced by Nine Mind and Lenkey Records. – Gibbo

Sizwe C, “Give Me Some”

Miami-based Trinidadian Sizwe C mixes extra-rude, Lucia/Grenada-style soca with the exhortational style of Miami Bass legend Uncle Luke on the 2018 Carnival contribution, “Give Me Some.” This Jus Now-produced track is sure to inspire some real wotless behavior come fetin’ season. – Jesse Serwer

Nailah Blackman, “Sokah”

Soca royalty Nailah Blackman pays tribute to her grandfather Lord Shorty’s creation with the nostalgic “Sokah.” Nailah’s infectious vocals approximate the ping-pang-pong-pong-pong of the steelpan while actual pannist Len “Boogsie” Sharpe and sitarist Mungal Patasar illustrate the African and East Indian roots of the most truly Trinidadian genre. — Jesse Serwer

Ken Boothe, “Speak Softly Love”

Ken Boothe, one of Jamaica’s most accomplished and distinctive singers, delivers a new interpretation of “Speak Softly Love,” a song made famous by Andy Williams, and first covered by Boothe on 1974. It’s one of many on his new unplugged album, Inna De Yard. — Gibbo