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Album Review

Famed (notorious, actually) reggae producer Duke Reid was one of the most powerful and successful figures in Jamaican music during the ska and rocksteady eras, and his Treasure Isle studio on Bond Street in Kingston was a mecca for the island's A-list stars. While the question of who really invented dub will forever be clouded in controversy, there is no question that Duke Reid's early recordings of the great reggae toaster U-Roy were of seminal importance; it is from this source that an entire river of popular music would later flow, and there is a clear and essentially unbroken line leading from those early dub-with-DJ recordings to modern hip-hop and remix culture. Pleasure Dub brings together an excellent selection of classic dub versions from the early days of Treasure Isle — such deathless rocksteady hits as the Paragons' "Tide Is High" (versioned here as "Dub with Strings"), Phyllis Dillon's "The Right Track" ("Tracking Dub"), and the Jamaicans' "Things You Say You Love" ("Rema Skank") are presented here, and the music is not only thoroughly enjoyable, but also somewhat educational: this is transitional music, more sprightly than reggae but not nearly as headlong and galloping as ska, and the dub mixes tend to be raw and experimental and very exciting. The backing tracks (or "rhythms") presented here were all provided by Skatalites alumnus Tommy McCook and his crack session band the Supersonics; during this period there was probably no better session ensemble anywhere in Jamaica. A couple of the CD-only bonus tracks feel like filler, but for the most part this is an utterly essential dub collection.

Pleasure Dub, Tommy McCook & The Supersonics
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  • 8,99 €
  • Genres: Reggae, Music
  • Released: 28 July 2009

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