French reggae band Dub Inc was recently in India as part of the India Music Week. The eight-member group played in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru. Formed in 1997, the group also has a documentary to their name — The Rude Boy Story (directed by Kamir Meridja) that captures the life of an independent band. We caught up with Zigo (drummer) and Komlan (lead vocals)
So how was your first India tour?
We felt blessed! It’s wonderful to have this opportunity to come to India and perform.
How aware are you of Indian music, artists and films?
With the exception of musicians like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan or Shri (who we have toured with), we don’t know much about the Indian scene. We’ve just begun listening to the Ska Vengers and the Reggae Rajahs as we played with them during this tour. They’re both really, really good. We love to discover different cultures and reggae bands from across the world.
We heard you’re working on a new album at the moment...
We are just beginning work on our new album. We don’t have a title yet, but what we can tell you is that it’s a great mix of culture in true reggae style. We will continue to address issues like inequality, racism, and try to denounce the injustice we see everyday in the world. This album will probably sound just a bit more modern than our previous one because we’re really focussing on the mix to create a new sound design.
You’re tagged as the pioneers in reggae. How has your style evolved?
Our sound revolves around reggae, dancehall and nu-roots but we also include touches of hip hop, African traditional music, a little bit of rock for the energy. As far as possible, we try not to restrict our sound, but rather let the way we feel and our inspirations give our audience the signature Dub Inc sound.
You’re known to have revived the French reggae scene…
We came into the French reggae scene at a really difficult time. A lot of reggae bands have disappeared over the last 10 years, and we are almost survivors. The French really do love reggae. But today it’s really hard to promote a new band, with the way the economy is going.