Dawning Of A New Era ~ Roots Of Skinhead Reggae
Trojan Records
August 29, 2005

Track list
Disc 1

  1. John Jones - Rudy Mills
  2. Gimme Back - Derrick Morgan
  3. In Like Flint - The Good Guys
  4. Tommy's Dream - Tommy McCook
  5. Son Of Reggae - Sylvan Williams
  6. Quaker City - Eric Barnett & Theo Beckford's Group
  7. Reggae Beat - The Pioneers
  8. Groovin' At The Cue - Dandy & His Group
  9. (What A) Revenge - Derrick Morgan And Desmond Dekker
  10. Fat Man - Derrick Morgan
  11. South Parkway Rock - Val Bennett
  12. Rescue Me - The Reggae Girls (aka The Ebony Sisters)
  13. What You Gonna Do - The Reggae Boys
  14. Night Of Love - Ansel Collins
  15. Wala Wala - The Pioneers
  16. Mix It Up - The Kingstonians
  17. Forest Gate Rock - Lester Sterling
  18. Soul Scorcha - Karl 'King Cannon' Bryan & The Harry J All Stars
  19. She's So Fine - Glen Adams
  20. Magic Touch - Junior Murvin
  21. Reggie On Broadway - Lester Sterling
Disc 2

  1. Another Scorcher - The Tennors
  2. The Avengers - Tommy McCook
  3. 5 To 5 - Lloyd Charmers
  4. Rock Steady Gone - Dandy
  5. Reggae Hit The Town - The Ethiopians
  6. Su Su Su - The Pioneers
  7. Dip It Up - The Sparklers
  8. Splash Down - The Crystalites
  9. Peanut Vendor - Tommy McCook
  10. Wooh Oh Oh - Keith Blake
  11. My Argument - Lloyd Charmers
  12. Wise Message - Rico & The All Stars
  13. Cool Hand Luke - Brother Dan & The All Stars
  14. Drop Pon - The Crystalites
  15. Eastern Organ - Brother Dan & The All Stars
  16. Baby Baby - Val Bennett
  17. Cat Woman - Glen Adams
  18. Parapinto - Karl Ryan & Johnny Moore
  19. Last Laugh - Lloyd Charmers
  20. Reggae Girl - The Tennors
  21. Spoogy - Lester Sterling
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 3 Backing : 5 Production : 4 Sound quality : 3 Sleeve : 1
It's a good month for those of you into Bluebeat, Ska and Rocksteady -- first the Lynn Tait selection, and now this 42 track dbl CD which collects tunes from the long, long deleted Bullet, Unity, Attack, Big shot and Beverley’s labels, and the majority of the selection is rare music.

This selection, is not, thankfully, besides perhaps three of the tracks -- duplicated elsewhere on other Trojan releases -- something they've done a few times over the years. This is mostly 90% fresh tracks, which shows Trojan are buying up rights to more obscure vinyl sources which has to be a good sign.

There are some real eccentricities here, notably a track by Prince Allah, when he was simply known as Keith Blake.

The selection is not all worthy in its entirety -- there is certainly some eminently forgettable filler here -- But looking at it objectively -- you are buying over 40 tracks here, so what do you expect!? There are some real meditative gems to be sought out scattered amongst the more forgettable teen harmonies -- check out the excellent Val Bennett jazz tune "South Parkway Rock" which sounds like it comes straight off a raw 60’s Chicago r n’ b blues compilation.

"Grooving at the Cue" is also quite unique, with the horns men leaning into dub wise and free jazz inner expression : Pharaoh Sanders and Ornette Coleman meet Don Drummond inna hooligan bluebeat style -- And it works!

Also notable is the sedate Tommy Mcook cut to the old soul tune "Unchained Melody" -- which thankfully, filters out the schmaltzy mood of the original to render the melody dreamlike and ethereal. It's ideally entitled "Tommy’s Dream."

Other stand out tracks are the thunderous horns cut to "Cuss Cuss", here entitled "Soul Scorcher" by the Harry J All Stars, with a frenetic, tense and disturbed horns section.

If you can ignore the flippant, disposable sleeve art depicting 14 year old skins -- this is a good buy, especially for those of you who are interested in checking out the sound of rude boy bluebeat, Jimmy Smith influenced r n’ b soul jazz style -- as it was morphing slowly into the more psychedelic, spacious and introspective moods of early reggae.