For all its lovers rock melodies this is an album of passionate songs with messages as strong as his peers - Tosh, Wailer etc. Sugar was badly overlooked as a roots pioneer but the release of this collection; original album plus dubs, is a much needed second chance to check out one of the better seventies reggae albums. Well worth a listen.
Words cannot express how I feel about this album.For me the unique combination of joyful reggae rhythm combined with some intricate musicianship makes this one of the strongest albums of all time and not just in a reggae album chart.Truly a ghetto classic which at the time I did not really appreciate.This album is more than just roots reggae, perhaps it could almost be described as folk reggae.I purchased this on vinyl when Trojan first released it in the Uk in the vividly coloured Jamaican food stall cover around 1979.This version has (I believe)the original cover and it includes sublime dubs of the Studio One rhythms.Sugar's subtle vocals pour out a cathartic set expressing the true feeling of suffering endured by kids in the ghetto at the time (or so I have to imagine).You can almost sense a feeling of comfort that stems from the content of this album which I imagine was semi-biographical for Minott as he penned these sincere expressions of sufferation and starvation in the ghetto.Sugar Minott has never really aspired to the heights of Dennis Brown or Gregory Isaacs outside of Jamaica which is a real shame as proudly demonstrated by this album.Yes he went on to tear up the dance hall with some fantastic tunes but this subtle,gentle album was the benchmark set for many roots artists who never aspired to this level. This still sounds incredibly fresh now. If you want a genuine all time top ten reggae album candidate then this would struggle to fall below number 3 in my book. Reggae for the roots connoisseur.Essential!