Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
"Soon Forward" Is a Stone Cold Reggae Classic
Gavin B. | St. Louis MO | 02/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Soon Forward" is song for song, the most crucial and conscious reggae album I've ever heard. Gregory's breakthrough album in the UK was 1981's "Extra Classic" and here in the USA it was "Night Nurse" in 1982 which far away is Gregory's best international selling album. "Soon Forward" was released earlier (1979)and failed to develop a significant audience outside of Jamaica. It's a shame because "Soon Forward" is Mr. Isaac's best album and a stone cold reggae classic
"Soon Forward" is a revelation because the album is just about the only Gregory Isaacs album that provides a perfect balance between Gregory's plantive and bitersweet lover's rock, and his steadfast, roots conscious, Rastafarian militate musical persona. Songs like "Universal Tribulation", "Black Liberation Struggle" and the transcendent "Slave Market" are songs of freedom that resonate as much as any song in Marley's sublime catalogue of music.
When the money is laid down on the table, nobody can sing lover's rock like Gregory, the cool ruler. "Soon Forward" the album's title song weaves a seductive trance-like spell and will mezmerize the listener. The song is muscular display of Sylvan Morris' dubwise mastery of the soundboard. Morris crashes out wave, after rippling wave of echoes, and he deftly pulls the vocals and the various instrumental passages in and out of the mix. It's some high stylin' dub, mon.
This is a percolating ganja soaked production with many of the usual musical suspects, like members of the Roots Radics, the original Burning Spear band, the Heptones, and Sly and Robbie. Sly Dunbar had the producer's credit for "Soon Forward" but engineer Sylvan Morris should share equal credit for the crystal clear mix and the shock and awe of his dub factor. Dennis Brown and Junior Delgado add background vocals that almost make Gregory sound as if he's singing lead in a longstanding trio of vocalists like the Itals or the Melodians at times
I've listened to and purchased hundreds of reggae albums since the mid 1970s and Gregory Isaac's "Soon Forward" is the still the masterwork of all crucial albums from the golden age of roots and conscious reggae. I play it early and often each week and after 26 years of hearing it, I still reap the rewards of repeated listening.
Cool Ruler delivers with aplomb
mrfascination | seattle, wa United States | 09/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Gregory Isaacs has oft been referred to as the Frank Sinatra of regge and this is not just hyperbole. The man's phrasing is as subtle as it is ultimately powerfully moving. Before the drugs took their toll on his pipes Isaacs was peerless in reggae for his ability to put a song across. Even the mighty Dennis Brown acknowledged his good friend's talents. All that said Soon Forward is perhaps the Cool Ruler's finest LP. Covering reality themes on Universal Tribulation (an absolutely devestating track) and Black Liberation Struggle et al while also delivering classic Isaacs romanticism on Lonely Girl and the title track. Produced by Isaacs and featuring a band that includes Horsemouth, Bingy Bunny, Sly and Robbie, Ansel Collins, Deadly Headly, Bobby Ellis and Wire Lindo plus backing vocals from Leroy Sibbles (Heptones) Dennis Brown and Junior Delgado, what more do you need to know? If you don't already own it, I feel for you,friend."