United Dreadlocks Volumes 1 And 2 – Joe Gibbs Roots Reggae 1976–1977 – Doctor Bird

Something for the weekend? Originally complied and released back in the late seventies this fresh collection now adds additional tracks to the celebratory playlist doubling the output. Numbers like Rockers Nu Crackers by Glen Washington really garb attention while the production values of Price Far I’s heavy-duty Deck Of Cards now seem otherworldly, especially if reggae isn’t something you always choose to listen to. The music produced in this era has a uniquely distinctive feel setting itself apart from the structures of rock n roll while the songs define the realities of the era covering sweetness and light and contrasting conflicts. The second disc continues the lyrical themes proposed as the music resounds with the power of Dub echoing throughout its system, this time bonus standouts include the warm melodies of Stop Picking On Me by Max Romeo and of course Uptown Top Ranking from Althea and Donna still making a defining statement, as does Culture’s prophetic Two Sevens Clash.

Release: June 17
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Money In My Pocket – The Joe Gibbs Singles Collection 1972-1973 – Doctor Bird

I meant to review this before its release, must have been distracted by unseasonal sunshine here in the UK. It’s a real pleasure to listen to this collection of Jamaican sounds spanning 1972-1973 produced by the legendary Joe Gibbs well before his masterpiece Chapter Three. Still containing that cutting skank from Ska the brew of words had already began to contain more message in the music. The deeper feelings expressed on the soulful end of things like The World Is on A Wheel by The Mediators seem as timeless then as now. While the Dub explorations seem just as spaced and revolutionary as More Dub by Joe Gibbs & The Professionals proves. The roll call of names appear from the breadth and depth of Augustus Pablo, Big Youth, Dillinger, Delroy Wilson and of course Denis Brown whose signature Money In My Pocket still exceeds expectation. There’s much more to discover than that though when paced alongside the sleeve notes detailed by Tony Rounce guarantee a continuing essential experience.

Release: March 25