Album review
Heavyweight Dub & Killer Dub
Inner Circle & The Fatman Riddim Section
Blood and Fire
29 - 10 - 1999

Tracking list

    "Heavyweight Dub"

  1. Copper Bullet
  2. Fidel At The Control
  3. General Amin
  4. Frelimo
  5. Down Rhodesia
  6. Bad Reputation
  7. Peace Time Now
  8. Too Much War
  9. Unemployement Rock
  10. Massacre

    "Killer Dub"

  11. Release Dub
  12. Careless Dub
  13. Dread At The Control
  14. Meditation Rock
  15. Rock For Ever
  16. Shakey Dub
  17. All Babylonians
  18. Killer Dub
  19. Addis Ababa Rock
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : - Backing : 4/5 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 4 Sleeve : 4

The latest Blood and Fire issue collects two fine dub albums -both released in 1978- made by Inner Circle. During that period the band were extremely poular on the island, even exceeding the popularity of Bob Marley and The Wailers. They started out 30 years ago -in 1969-, incorporating future members of Third World, Ibo Cooper and Cat Coore. The foundation members were the brothers Ian Monteith Lewis on bass, and Roger Lewis on guitars. Their initial chart succes came in 1971 with the recording of Eric Donaldson's Song Festival tune 'Cherry Oh Baby', a tune produced by Bunny 'Striker' Lee. Further chart succes was achieved with the recording of Eric Donaldson's 'Love Of The Common People'. In 1973, as Third World formed, they recruited a new drummer and keyboard player. With Jacob 'Killer' Miller as lead vocalist they began a run of success that only ended with Jacob's untimely death in a car crash in 1980. Their collaboration with producer Tommy Cowan resulted in the release of several albums of mainly covers. In 1976 they signed to Capital Records who released two albums 'Reggae Thing' and 'Ready For The World' that caught the band trying to make headway in the US market they would eventually conquer after Jacob's death. Meanwhile they released a string of Jamaican hits like 'Tenement Yard', Forward Jah Jah Children' and Tired Fe Lick Weed Inna Bush'. The signing up to Island Records in 1977 led to the release of the album 'Everything Is Great'.
The dub cuts found here were mainly drawn from Jacob Miller's more heavy, rootsy albums issued on the Top ranking label, 'Killer Miller' and 'Wanted'. The album 'Heavyweight Dub' was produced by the Lewis Brothers and recorded at the Channel One Studio. The mixing was done by Maximillian. The 'Killer Dub' set however was mixed by King Tubby's foremost apprentice, Prince Jammy at King Tubby's studio and produced by Inner Circle.
Most dubs found here are reworkings of Jacob Miller tunes such as "Peacy Treaty Special' (Peace Time Now), 'I Shall Be Released' (Release Dub), '80,000 Careless Ethiopians' (Careless Dub), 'Big Stripe' (Rock For Ever), Shaky Girl (Shaky Dub), 'Killer Miller' (Killer Dub) and 'Land Called Home (Addis Ababa Rock). Also included here is a wicked dub cut to Desi Roots' 1977 monster hit 'School Tonight' (Copper Bullet). Frelimo is the dub cut to one of Jacob's finest songs, 'Standing Firm'. Drawn from Jacob's Xmas album is Unemployement Rock, the dub to the Xmas carol 'Deck The Halls'. The track All Babylonians is the dub to Earl Zero's 'City Of The Weak Heart', also covered by Jacob Miller.
Musicians on this excellent re-release include the Brothers Lewis (bass and guitars), Touter Harvey on keyboard, Charles Farquharson on keyboard and guitar, Calvin McKenzie & Sly Dunbar on drums, Dean Fraser as the saxophonist, Sky Juice on percussion and on lead guitar Earl Chinna Smith.
Also check out the reissue tribute double cd 'Jacob Miller Songbook - Chapter A Day'.

Teacher & Mr. T.