4 albums, all at the real cutting edge of dub in the 70's by the visionary of Fay Music, Mr. Edwards. King Tubby meets the Upsetter at the Grass Roots of Dub and KT Surrounded by the Dreads absolutely essential listening for those who wish to learn the true magic of the man named King. OK Natty Sounds a tad dated know but hell rare and the essential link between 70s reggae and dub. Can you fault Blackbeard? Hardest sounding album. Invest £12 now if you want to know what real 70's dub sound like.
hope the previous reviewer resolved his deficet, as he'll be missing out, whichever disc it is. although i've still a couple to get, this series is essential stuff, both for newcomers and old hands, in 7 (so far) easy lessons. much praise to greensleeves. this set begins with the soul, roots, jazz, lounge dub of winston edwards, discs 2 and 3 primarily tubby heavy (ho ho), and exemplify widely his genius in the field. the legendary 'king tubby meets the upsetter at the grass roots of dub' also features some superb scratch material, pre black ark. but, the ball in the back of the net in this collection is blackbeard's (and edwards) 'dub conference'. this album just rips it and is a prime example of uk based reggae at it's best. how about vol 8 being an all uk set. there's enough killer material for this. again, run long with this series.
I want to add something to the overall assessments that tech sergeant gives here and comment man gives on AMZ US, because I was led by an AMZ suggestion to a JetStar version of disc 2 included in this excellent set. But at a certain point I realized that I already had it form this collection. So here's what I said in reply to other reviewers of that release because it may be helpful for those considering this one. If anyone has both versions, please let us know if there is any significant difference in sound quality:
This is available on Evolution of Dub Vol.7 for not much more money and including three other great albums with people like Joe Gibbs, Lee Perry, Winston Edwards and Dennis Bovell involved.
Both reviewers on AMZ UK are right that this is not just a rehash of old stuff but also the sound quality isn't pristine. The full title of the album is 'KT surrounded by the Dreads at the National Arena', recorded in 1975. So it is a 'live' album of sorts, though it isn't 100% clear from the otherwise informative liner notes what that really means in the end. At least the music of the Dreads is live, and I'm assuming that Tubby, who is said to have 'played form 6PM to 6AM', was dubbing live at the Arena, sound system style. With that in mind, it is actually pretty amazing stuff.
Anyway, it is still an excellent and unique addition to the KT catalog, just make sure to get the Evolution version. I cannot guarantee that that one has (much) better sound, because I haven't heard the JetStar version, but as one reviewer has already mentioned, it isn't so bad by Jamaican standards at the time and, I'll add, for a live album anywhere at the time. How many horrendous sound quality but 'historical' albums or bootlegs do the ears of so many music fans suffer through for the sake of hearing some otherwise unavailable or rare sounds or tunes from their favorite artists?
No time for a detailed analysis of the actual music, but KT fans won't be disappointed. Fans of big, fat, languorous bass will be really happy. Unfortunately, one problem with the Evolution series is that it often isn't clear who exactly played what on which album. In the liner notes, it says that the Dreads are actually the Wailers, but looking elsewhere you'll find that it is the Natty Locks Band. Whether these are all the same is a mystery I don't have time to solve. If anyone knows, please reply.