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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Immense album by The Wailers, 10 Mar 2009
By 
Rudy (Cardiff, Wales) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
The Wailers made some great albums and this is one of the very best. The grooves are tight with melodic hooks and excellent harmonies. I have all their albums and consider this to be lyrically one of Bob's best. There are some real classics on this album and it is a massive disappointment to me that Legend contains no songs from it whatsoever, big mistake by Island Records in my opinion. There are no love songs here, just pure roots, albeit in more mainstream friendly arrangements than any other roots reggae artists. This fact often gets The Wailers a lot of criticism for being too pop or soft somehow. Bob spent quite a bit of time working in America before hitting the big time and along with the extended world tours that they went on and the fact that they were signed to a major record label, meant that their musical horizons were expanded and they no longer only looked inwards at the Jamaican scene to develop their sound. This immersion in world music had a knock on effect on their music and that is the reason why they had more mainstream appeal and hence are the only reggae act to get any real commercial success. They did not sell out, but they did want their music to be heard around the world. It is just unfortunate that all the other great reggae artists like Burning Spear, Dennis Brown, Gregory Isaacs, Prince Alla, Wailing Souls, The Royals, Little Roy, Jimmy Cliff, The Congos, Israel Vibration, Mighty Diamonds, Bob Andy, The Abyssinians etc didn't get the recognition and record sales they deserved. But don't blame The Wailers for that, just enjoy this music for what it is. A great band spreading the message of the greatest lyricist in modern music.

"To divide and rule, could only tear us apart
in everyman chest
there beats a heart
so soon we'll find out
who is the real revolutionaries
and i don't want my people
to be tricked by mercenaries."

"We refuse to be
what you wanted us to be
we are what we are
that's the way it's going to be."

"They say what we know
is just what they teach us
we're so ignorant
every time they can reach us
through political strategy
they keep us hungry
when you gonna get some food
your brother got to be your enemy."

They're just a few samples of the amazing lyrics off this album. Like all of Bob's best lyrics, they sum up complex problems or situations so anyone can understand them. It's hard to pick favourites but if forced I would choose So Much Trouble In The World, Zimbabwe, Babylon System, One Drop and Ride Natty Ride but they're all tremendous songs and that is what makes Survival so good. If you have any interest at all in The Wailers or reggae then buy this now. If you're feeling adventurous or want more reggae to listen to then get some albums by the artists I mentioned above. They won't let you down.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Survival, a triumph of musical brilliance, 20 Nov 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
Bob Marley the king of reggae, the man at the forefront of spreading reggae music across the world, the man who gave every rastafarian a voice to unite and overcome their tribulations and of course the man who gave us albums of timeless classics such as 'Exodus' and 'Catch A Fire'. Survival, one his greatest achivements, was recorded in 1979, although 21 years old it still has the quality to rival almost everything the reggae world has since to muster. Survival contains some of Marleys greatest works from the opening song 'So much trouble in the world' which talks about the trials and tribulations of ethnic people to the albums conclusion 'Wake up and live', Marleys sweet but powerful vocals shines through along with the backing of the I-threes and the superb intrumentation of the Wailers, there is no signs of weaknesses on this ground breaking album. Undoubtely the best song on the album is Zimbabwe, which after its release created a political revolution in Zimbabwe, a sign of the undoubted talent and inspiration of Marleys music. A must have in your collection.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bob Marley & The Wailers Best, 2 Jan 2010
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
I like the lyrics in this album, but also the arrangement of the bass and whole percussion. The way the instruments sound is unique. Every track is well put together. I have come to regard this as the best album by the greatest band that ever graced the earth.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Conscious Vibrations, 20 Feb 2008
By 
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
Without doubt this is Bob Marley's finest album. The intoxicating melodies combined with the most conscious lyrics leave you in complete admiration listening to one of the most gifted iconic songwriters at the top of their game.

The songs are well written, the verses are beautifully constructed and the musical arrangements are expansive and add to the intensity of the lyrics, particularly on songs such as "Top Ranking" and the autobiographical account of the failed assassination attempt on him on "Ambush in the night".

Songs such as "Babylon System" underline Bob Marley's universal appeal to the oppressed people he so fervently championed. The song's underlying message of defiance against corrupt political systems resonates very powerfully today, as it did back when the words were penned.

The anthemic "One drop" showcases Bob's ability to incorporate conscious lyrics into a riddim made for just skanking.

"Zimbabwe" opens up with the immortal lines "Every man has a right to decide his own destiny" and is very poignant in light of the current political climate there.

All in all a masterclass thoroughly recommended to anyone with more than just a passing interest in reggae.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A grower, 22 April 2008
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
I'd call this album a grower, definitely not one for someone new to reggae or just dabbling in reggae. It has a much more synth 80's style of playing than earlier roots albums by Bob. So if you're looking for rough roots rock or pop tinged reggae you may be disappointed. If you're a hardcore reggae or Bob fan you've probably got this already.

What I would say is the beauty in this album is in how it's crafted, these are some of Bob's most prophetic lyrics. Just listen to Zimbabwe it's as relevant a lyric today as it was when it was written.

I bought this album years ago when I was in my early 20's its only now as I carrier towards 30 that it has grown on me so perhaps its one for the more mature listener.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awakening, 10 Mar 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
Bob Marley at his best. This album surpasses the excellent Exodus and Rastaman Vibration albums. Forget all those greatest hits albums, this songs are just too real for the "mainstream" market. It's on this album that Mr Marley undisputably earns his prophet dues. You will definitely be unable to stand your rose-tinted glasses after this album touches you.
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5.0 out of 5 stars one of the great reggae albums., 7 Mar 2014
By 
Andrew Clacey "sid1964" (london uk) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
this is a very special album by a very special man, its full of great tunes, i cant pick a favourite as they are all my favourites!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars another cool tune, 4 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
My good mate Colin asked me to order him a selection of Bob Marley CD`s . these he wished to play in his car , and out the back in his garden during our brief summer . this I did and he thoroughly enjoyed them
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5.0 out of 5 stars Survival. A triumph, 2 Aug 2013
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This review is from: Survival (MP3 Download)
Superb album from a genius, sadly missed today. I am not a rasta, but can appreciate the lyrics, together with great grooves that make each track individual.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 29 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Survival (Audio CD)
Bob marley music is without doubt the best ever recorded. This album is one of the best great words great message bob we love you
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Survival by Bob Marley (Audio CD - 2001)
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