Friday, December 7, 2007

Earl 'Chinna' Smith - Dub It


Earl 'Chinna' Smith - Dub It
Label - Nature Sounds
Recorded - 1984
Style - Dancehall, Reggae, Dub, Lee Library

Recording Engineer : Steven Stewart & Chow & Errol Brown
Mixing Engineer : Steven Stewart & Errol Brown

Producer : Earl Chinna Smith

Backing Vocals : Allalake & Errol Thompson
Drums : Santa Davis & Specs Bifirimbi & Drummer Stone & Carlton Barrett & Horsemouth Wallace
Bass : Christopher Meredith & Gibby & Earl Chinna Smith
Guitar : Earl Chinna Smith
Keyboards : Tarzan & Augustus Pablo & Phillip Ramacon & Wire Lindo
Saxophone : Dean Frazer
Trombone : Nambo Robinson
Trumpet : Bobby Ellis & David Madden
Acoustic Guitar : Andy Bassford
Melodica : Augustus Pablo & Phillip Ramacon
Percussions : Harry T. Powell & Sydney Wolf
Funde : Sydney Wolf
Bass Drum : Sydney Wolf

Dub It! is essentially the dub version of Jamaican poet Mutabaruka's groundbreaking LP debut, Check It!, originally released in 1983 on Earl "Chinna" Smith's High Times label. Although it received little to no radio airplay, Check It! almost single-handedly put the dub poetry subgenre on the musical map, due in part to Mutabaruka's impassioned, incendiary lyrics, but also because of the tight, solid play of the session band Smith put together for the project. Billed as the High Times Players, the musicians included guitarist Smith, Augustus Pablo on keyboards and melodica,the Wailers rhythm section, and ace horn players Dean Fraser, Bobby Ellis and David Madden, among others. What makes Dub It! stand out, now that it has finally been released some 20 years after it was tracked, is the mixing approach used by engineers Steven Stewart and Errol Brown. While the murky, ominous reverb and echo delay that is endemic to dub is present here, it is used appropriately rather than constantly, which means the ensemble roots playing of the musicians is allowed to shine through, and when the mixes phase shift into deep dub territory, it is a clear celebration of the music rather than an electronic distortion of it. The album as a whole has a seamless, suite-like quality, but among the key tracks are "Whiteman Dub," which features Pablo's trademark melodica runs, the eerie, almost industrial "Whe Mi Dub?" (a second, alternate mix of this one adds a small vocal choir and turns from eerie to downright spooky), and "Postpone Dub," with its wonderfully syncopated piano. The end result of all this is an album that stands on its own quite capably, and even listeners unfamiliar with Mutabaruka's Check It! will have no problem appreciating this long delayed gem. ~ Steve Leggett, All Music Guide

Tracklist:
Dub It !
Dub System
Everytime Eye Ear De Dub
Whiteman Dub
Whe Mi Dub ?
Butta Pan Dub
Naw Dub
Postpone Dub
Free Up The Dub
Whe Mi Dub ? (Alternate Mix)

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4 comments:

Chris Ward said...

Thanks again Sir!
I love Augustus Pablo, will be enjoying this later tonight.

XMP said...

rock that shit homey

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to hear this one - much appreciated.

Cheers to you,

Nostro.

XMP said...

DUB IT, MANNNNNNNNNNNN!