House of Marley, House of Love

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The House of Marley succeeds in developing high performance, highly distinctive headphones and sonic accessories. They really do stand out from the crowd thanks to a savvy design ethos that acknowledges Bob Marley but does not pander to the “Rasta 101” identity. We’re certainly happy to wear these cans, apart from a sea of people rocking iPod buds.

Celebrity-endorsed headphones. We’ve test driven them all. The phenomenon started with Dr. Dre’s Beats line and gathered pace with spinoffs from Lady Gaga and P Diddy. House of Marley headphones are very comfortable despite its size and weight. The soft ear cups are well padded and fit snug around our ears, and the headband adjusts smartly to the size of your head, so wearing them for long periods is no problem at all. They may be designed by the house that built reggae, but they sound fantastic across a range of musical styles. Bass is exaggerated slightly, but in many cases it plumps up the track to great benefit. It’s quite desirable with most music styles – especially hip hop – particularly if you’re prone to shivers down your back every time a heavy bassline drops.

But even genre-busting adventures like Godspeed You Black Emperor, when piped through these cans, will throw low frequencies around so sweetly, it’ll feel as if you’re standing next to a subwoofer in a thumping live venue. Such sublime warmth and tight power. Where they truly shine is in music featuring deep, stirring bass. Five stars, full stop.

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