Dub Specialist – Studio One Dub Fire Special

by May 27, 2016Artist, Reviews

Dub Specialist - Studio One Dub Fire Special
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Release Info

Title: Dub Specialist – Studio One Dub Fire Special

Label: Soul Jazz Records | Format: CD-DBL LP | Street date: May 27, 2016 | Website: Soul Jazz Records

  1. Cairo
  2. Lourenco Marques
  3. Callie Roots
  4. Libra Dub
  5. Dakar
  6. Better Dub
  7. Rockers Hop
  8. Roots Dub
  9. Moving Dub
  10. Just Can’t Dub
  11. Meet 7 Million
  12. Scorpio Dub
  13. Nairobi
  14. Dub Creation
  15. Virgo Dub
  16. This Race
  17. Darker Black
  18. Capricorn Dub

Overviewing Soul Jazz Records’ Studio One reissue programme that started about fifteen years ago, it’s obvious that the London based record label has put out an incredible amount of compilations of Studio One recordings. The massive “Studio One Dub Fire Special”, after “Studio One Dub” (2004) and “Studio One Dub” (2007) the third volume of classic Studio One dubs, is Soul Jazz’s latest trawl through the seemingly endless vaults of Coxsone Dodd’s Studio One label. While “Studio One Dub” featured tracks taken mainly from the B-sides of 7″ singles, “Studio One Dub Fire Special” is entirely culled from nine out of twelve existing Studio One dub albums issued from 1974 to 1980. These dub albums include “Hi Fashion Dub Top Ten” (1974), the essential “Dub Store Special” (1974), “Better Dub” (1974), “Roots Dub” (1975), ‘Bionic Dub” (1975), “Zodiac Sounds” (1975), “Sample Dub” (1975), “Juk’s Incorporation” (1976) and “African Rub A Dub” (1980), the last dub album that Coxsone Dodd released himself.

Coxsone Dodd’s talented recording engineer Sylvan Morris left the label’s infamous Brentford Road studio in Kingston, Jamaica, before the series of Studio One dub albums began, it’s likely that Mr. Dodd under the alias Dub Specialist mixed all the twelve dub albums himself. What makes all these dub albums particularly interesting aren’t the dub mixes, but the strength of the Studio One riddims, played by legendary in-house bands like Sound Dimension, New Establishment, Soul Vendors, Soul Brothers, Soul Defenders and Brentford All-Stars, that always shine through.

Connoisseurs and probably also longtime fans of Studio One will instantly recognize classic riddims such as Jackie Mittoo’s “Hot Milk” (“Cairo”), Alton Ellis’ “I’m Just A Guy” (“Callie Roots”), Sound Dimension’s “Heavy Rock” (“Better Dub”), Roland Alphonso’s “Jah Shakey” (“Rockers Hop”), Ken Boothe’s “Moving Away” (“Moving Dub”), The Heptones’ “You’ve Turned Away” (“Scorpio Dub”), Horace Andy’s “Every Tongue Shall Tell” (“Nairobi”), Dennis Brown’s “Created By The Father” (“Dub Creation”), Delroy Wilson’s “Run Run” (“Virgo Dub”) and Burning Spear’s “Rocking Time” (“This Race”). Quite a number of tracks included here border on the instrumentals, due to the lightness of the dub treatments, while tracks such as “Libra Dub”, “Darker Black” and “Scorpio Dub” are good examples of tracks where the mix comes into play. A few dubs have vocal fragments of George Dudley, Ken Boothe, Freddie McGregor in the mix, which is always nice to hear.

As, to our knowledge, only two of the original Studio One dub series have been reissued on cd, (“Roots Dub” & “Juk’s Incorporation”), it would be great if the remaining ten would also get a proper reissue. Anyway, this “Studio One Dub Fire Special” is a great collection of some of the finest dub cuts to classic and foundation songs recorded at Studio One.

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