The Expanders ‘Hustling Culture’ album review

The city of Los Angeles is linked to progression and style, even in the instance of placing a modern twist on vintage culture. With this in mind, it is no wonder that The Expanders, an LA-based roots reggae band, has made such an impact reviving and – for lack of a better word – expanding on the classic sounds of 1970’s and 80’s reggae. With three-part melodies and dancehall motifs, The Expanders’ new LP exemplifies new dogs learning old tricks: growth is enabled out of retrogression, thus the passe has indeed become present.

The title “Hustling Culture” implies busy beats and chaotic stanzas, but the album is anything but.

Though Hustling Culture is technically dubbed The Expanders’ third album, the band sees it as their first one of cohesive stature. Although The Expanders debuted a self-titled LP in 2011, it was more of an extended collaboration between the band and their friends, recorded between the years of 2006-2010. Following the initial album was a project titled Old Time Something Come Back Again in 2012 – 13 classic Jamaican covers with a twist, marketed for free out of fan appreciation. Now, for the first time since their birth in 2003, The Expanders is about to premier on June 16th an album exclusively of their own.

The title “Hustling Culture” implies busy beats and chaotic stanzas, but the album is anything but. The self-titled inaugural track is of a slow tempo – one that persists throughout the album. The listener experiences an involuntary elevation in mood as a result of The Expanders’ unceasingly buoyant and upbeat timbre, with “hustling” the last thing in mind. Available for pre-order on iTunes, purchasers are awarded an instant download of the track “World of Happiness” ahead of the album release date.

Want to see The Expanders live? Californians are in luck, for the band has already kicked off their west coast tour with 11 stops on the agenda before performing in the Reggae on the Mountain Festival on July 25th. Additional shows are to be determined at this time, so regardless of location, stay tuned for more of The Expanders!

Preview and download Hustling Culture on

Hustling Culture track listing

  1. Hustling Culture  
  2. Uptown Set
  3. Piece of Love
  4. World of Happiness
  5. People Business   
  6. Top Shelf
  7. Too Late  
  8. Reggae Pops (feat. Dan Hastie)
  9. The Horse
  10. Iron Throne (Extended 12″ Version)
  11. Thanks for Life   
  12. Flesh and Bone

The Expanders “World Of Happiness”

Release date June 16, 2015 • Easy Star Records

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Disclaimer: All views presented in this album review are those of the reviewer and not necessarily those of Top Shelf Music.

Tour dates for the expanders

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