Album review
Hope, Faith & Love
Nereus Joseph
Ruff Cutt

Tracking list

  1. Rude Boy Town
  2. African Queen
  3. Keep It Up
  4. African Resistance
  5. No Morality
  6. Hope, Faith & Love
  7. Jah Never Fail
  8. Fig Tree
  9. Mind What You Do
  10. Say You Love Me
  11. Keep On Loving Me
  12. Make A Plan
  13. Work
  14. Keep It Up Dub
  15. Fig Tree Dub
  16. Rude Boy Dub
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3

Almost half a decade after the release of his critical acclaimed "Rejoice" set, Nereus Joseph sees the release of his fourth album, "Hope, Faith & Love". As one of the mainstays of UK lovers rock (but nevertheless also known for delivering notable message tunes) he thrilled dances throughout the nineties with hits like "Guidance", No One Night Stand", "Rock With Me Baby", "Special Lady", "Rocksteady Time" and "Sensi Crisis". Besides being successful as a solo artist he then also enjoyed success as a member of UK's first supergroup Passion. With the exception of "Make A Plan", which was produced by Kenny Edgehill and Nereus Joseph himself, "Hope, Faith & Love" contains a collection of tunes that were produced by the renown Ruff Cutt crew from London UK, whose unique sound is revered all over the world.
Right from the start the listener is treated to good quality reggae music. Backed by impeccable riddims Nereus Joseph fully showcases that he's a fine singer with a distinctive vocal delivery, who provides both romantic and spiritual upliftment in his self-penned songs. The album opens strong with the wicked roots piece "Rude Boy Town", one of three previously released Ruff Cutt 7" singles included on this set. The others are the awesome "African Resistance" - a next piece to Freddie McGregor's outstanding stepper "Give Jah The Glory" - and the matching "Jah Never Fail". Also "Make A Plan", earlier this year released as a 7" single on the singer's own Sirius Records, can be regarded as one of this set's best conscious efforts and the same goes for "No Morality" and the brilliant title track, the moving "Hope, Faith & Glory". When it comes to matters of the heart "Keep On Loving Me" is definitely the track to check, but also "Say You Love Me" makes a decent impression. Two covers are featured here as well: Bunny Wailer's "Fig Tree" and Dennis Brown's "Keep It Up", the latter delivered in fine style and betraying the influence from the still sorely missed "Crownprince of Reggae".
If your ears have never had the pleasure of meeting Nereus Joseph, then check out "Hope, Faith & Love, you won't be disappointed.

Teacher & Mr. T.