Album review
Jamming In The House Of Dread
Big Youth
06 - 02 - 2000

Tracking list

  1. I Pray Thee
  2. Every Nigger Is A Star
  3. Jim Squeechy
  4. House Of Dread
  5. Things Friend
  6. Ten Against One
  7. Hit The Road Jack
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

The label ROIR started in 1979 as a cassette-only label, specializing in hardcore, punk, reggae, ska, dub and worldmusic. Now, twenty years later the company realises that the cassettes are becoming 'artifacts' and 'collector's items' and started rerelasing the best of their back catalog on cd, completely digitally remastered - as well as new, never before released albums from cutting-edge artists.
Former Kingston cabbie Manley Buchanan, better known as Big 'Jah' Youth was almost as popular in Jamaica in the 70's as Bob Marley. He's famous for his comments on social and racial injustice and ghetto runnings. He recorded intensively for an array of producers, releasing a string of hits and hit albums.
This album was originally released as cassette-only in 1991 and is the live registration of his performance at Reggae Japansplash in Osaka, Japan on August 30th, 1990. The backing band is Lloyd Parks and the We The People Band.
As always Big Youth performs like a cool king of riddim, bubbling across the instrumentals' steady throbbing bass. The MC exults at the beginning, cueing the classic dubbed up riddim 'Satta". Big Youth's chanting praise I Pray Thee pours all over the riddim. The next tune is his classic song Every Nigger Is A Star. Next comes up Jim Squeechy across the 'Stalag' riddim. The highlight of the album is his version of Junior Byles' 'Curly Locks' retitled House Of The Dread. Another appealing tune is Ten Against One, originally built by producer Coxsone Dodd. The album closes with Hit The Road Jack, here performed as a tribute to Bob, Peter and Bunny !

Teacher & Mr. T.          Buy the CD