‘Run for cover now / I’m takin’ over / So please step aside / Because I ain’t gonna sympathise / Boy I’m gonna lay it on / From dusk till dawn / With a right to the head and a left to the cheek / (Musically)…’ From 1967 with Lynn Taitt, straight to the head of Coxsone Dodd.
Black Ark backing singers Aurelia Msimang (via Cedric’s United Africa), Candy MacKenzie and Pamela Reed, swirled into the signature 1978 Perry sound. Stand-out is the Nina Simone revision Young Gifted And Broke.
Lovely, bare, soulful, Black Ark roots from 1975, with backing by The Gladiators Band. Pressure-drop existentialism. Originally released by Alvin Ranglin on Typhoon, a few years later.
The title track is Upsetter genius. Brilliant Niney productions here too.
Almighty roots masterpiece. The combination of Perry’s militant genius and the Shoes’ Abyssinians-style wordless singing at the start is intensely stirring, every time. Plus the awesome Tight Spot.
Old-school deejay scatting over Memphis-stewed funk. Rockfort is no place to be off your face, mind. With a Val Bennett excursion on Django Shoots First.
Downright essential, psychedelic, Black Art lovers — another mighty Upsetters masterpiece, put together over eight months in 1976-77. Perry re-named the singer Faith for his patience.
A lovely, mellow, rare gem from the Gladiator; inimitable, funky Black Ark magic. Bunny Rugs on rhythm, Benbow drums. Perry’s dub is rugged and spare, with gently rolling delays. Originally a 1974 Sky-High.
Black Ark one-away. Upsetters business through and through, though Phil Pratt was nominally running the session. Nice version, with a pound of fatback drums. That’s Bobby Kalphat on melodica.
Dark, menacing and pained, wonderful Upsetters, and never more timely.
Essential Upsetters, from 1976 — a searing mix of soul, existentialism and revolutionism, sublimely executed.