The Bristol Reggae Explosion Vol. 3 - The 80's Part 2
Bristol Archive Records
March 19, 2012

The Bristol Reggae Explosion 3 The 80's Part 2 - Various Artists Track list
  1. Revelation Rockers - Jah Praises
  2. Bunny Marrett - I"m Free
  3. Talisman - Takin' The Strain (Cave Mix)
  4. Joshua Moses - Stick It Up
  5. Alfred McIntosh - Pain (Dub)
  6. Zion Band - Babylon Fire / Babylon Dub
  7. Talisman - Lick & Run
  8. Cool Runnings - You Can't Pay Me
  9. Ron Green feat. Glen Quake - Then Came You (Dub)
  10. Popsy Curious - Chant Down Bobby Rome
  11. Zapp Stereo - The Mission
  12. Cool Runnings - Playhouse
  13. The Radicals - Soul Eternal
  14. Vibes - My Love
  15. Dan Ratchet - Sweet Rosie
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Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 4 Sleeve : 4
Alreeady the third installment in Bristol Archive Records' worthwhile compilation series "The Bristol Reggae Explosion", seeing the label continue its praiseworthy mission to share the reggae heritage of Bristol with the world.

11 of the 15 tracks featured on "The Bristol Reggae Explosion Vol. 3 - The 80's Part 2" are never issued before, which might be surprising but actually isn't considering the fact that major record companies completely ignored the outburst of Bristol reggae talent back in the days. Thus it was left to the artists themselves and the handful of indie labels to spread the music. Working on tight budgets and with no money for marketing campaigns made that not all the recordings that were done got a proper release.

This entertaining compilation, which mostly concentrates on the roots side of reggae, kicks off with Revelation Rockers' "Jah Praises", a solid tune recorded in 1979 and taken from the recently released vinyl only album of the same name. Revelation Rockers changed their name to Talisman, and released their debut album "Takin' The Strain" in 1984. Here they are featured with the previously unreleased 'Cave Mix' of "Takin' The Strain" and "Lick & Run", both being decent efforts. Bunny Marrett made a strong impression on Vol. 2, and this he does again with a wonderful acoustic song called "I'm Free". It makes one wonder why this fine singer hasn't achieved to gain wider recognition. Joshua Moses is present with a live recording of "Stick It Up", while Alfred McIntosh contributes the nice dub tune "Pain".

Zion Band (most of whom would go on to form Restriction) deliver the very enjoyable "Babylon Fire/Babylon Dub", which previously appeared on a scarce 6-track vinyl release from the band. Two tracks from Cool Runnings are included here, the outstanding "You Can't Pay Me" and the matching "Playhouse", both whetting the appetite for their forthcoming self-titled album. Ron Green feat. Glen Quake come up with the second dub outing on this set, the psychedelic "Then Came You (Dub)". Popsy Curious, locally a very well known artist, contributes the rootsy "Chant Down Bobby Rome", and is also one of the vocalists of Vibes with whom he shows his lovers side on the "My Love" track. Zapp Stereo's instrumental dub piece "The Mission",driven by a great bass line, has a haunting soundscapes, which makes it interesting to listen to, although it might sound somewhat weird to some ears. Members of Aswad were involved in creating the riddim for Dan Ratchet's lovers tune "Sweet Rosie", a real nice example of classic mid-eighties UK reggae sound.

Once again Bristol Archive Records have succeeded in releasing an interesting and thoughtfully compiled album. Worth checking out!