Review: Regarded by dub lovers as a seminal collection, this three CD epic has been unavailable for a quarter of a century. It draws together three hugely important dub albums and includes seven previously unreleased tracks from the band's heyday from 1950 to 1975. Promoter, producer and DJ Arthur "Duke" Reid was a master of this form and a hero in Jamaica: his sound ruled the local dance halls and much of it was engineered by Errol Brown. You can hear his skills in all of the tracks here - the subtle keys, the sliding hi hats and the rolling drums all exude a perfectly inviting warmth.
Justin Hinds & The Dominoes - "The Road Is Rough" (2:45)
Tommy McCook & The Supersonics - "Look Away" (instrumental) (3:03)
Review: For those with major gaps in their ska, rocksteady and reggae collections, Treasure Isle's ongoing reissue series of seven-inch singles is a godsend. The Arthur 'Duke' Reid-founded label's latest must-have missive is a strong double-header. On side A you'll find "The Road Is Rough", a hazy and quietly soulful rocksteady gem from the prolific (and hugely successful) vocal group Justin Hinds and the Dominoes. The ear-pleasing musical backing on that number comes from Treasure Isle house band Tommy McCook and the Supersonics, an outfit that gets a chance to shine over on the flipside. Instrumental number "Look Away" is superb, with the band layering bittersweet horn lines and melancholic piano solos over a rock solid rocksteady riddim.
The Paragons - "Joy In My Soul" (feat Tommy McCook & The Supersonics) (2:24)
Tommy McCook & The Supersonics - "The World Needs Love" (instrumental) (2:11)
Review: This fabulous "45" features two more gems from the seemingly bottomless archives of Arthur 'Duke' Reid's legendary Treasure Isle studio and record label. First up on side A is "Joy In My Soul" by the Paragons, a vocal group best known for their rocksteady-era output. This particular number is a sweet slab of reggae soulfulness that was first released in 1975, though the Reid-produced cut sounds like it may have been recorded earlier. Turn to side B for Treasure Isle Tommy McCook and the Supersonics' "What The World Needs", an instrumental rocksteady cover of the Hal David/Burt Bacharach easy listening classic later made famous by Dione Warwick (and later fellow Motown stars the Supremes).