Jonathan M. Mason | Punta Gorda, FL USA | 10/03/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Unfortunately bands, no matter how talented and creative, have to pay the bills, and if you are not one of the very top level of performers like the Beatles, Stones, Dylan, Marley etc., then sooner or later you are going to have to bow to the demands of what the market will bear to put some bread on the table. This means recording what current popular taste suggests will sell. Even an artist as uncompromising as Marley was not totally immune to this. In his attempts to achieve better penetration of the US market, later efforts like Could You Be Loved show the influence of the disco sound.My two star rating may seem a little harsh, but if you like middle of the road type generic popular music of the type that you can find all over the radio dial, then you are probably already listening to the radio rather than buying CDs. What you will get here is a generous selection of reggae tinged pop songs of the type that would make ideal background music for a hairdressing salon. If that is what you want, then what are you waiting for? Buy this.For the rest of you, the good news is that there is a remarkable Aswad album called New Chapter (not New Chapter of Dub--that is a different album) that is highly recommended. New Chapter didn't sell very well when it was first released, but it is a classic album, which this is not.My rating system?***** A veritable classic album.
**** Very good, representative of this artist's best work
*** Fans of the artist in question should enjoy this.
** Some good stuff, but some major flaws.
A good compilation
Sean M. Kelly | Portland, Oregon United States | 09/18/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Since their formation in 1975, Aswad has emerged at the UK's premier reggae band, in the beginning fusing their mix of social commentary with overt Rastafarianism, though by the end of the 80's had transformed themselves into more is a soul/funk unit that still used reggae in the music. The result was international acclaim.This collection takes a closer look at the group's major tracks, starting off with their crossover smash, "Don't Turn Around." Among the other very important tracks on this collection include their cover of Toots and the Maytals classic "'54-46 (Was My Number)," "Chasing The Breeze," a minor hit in the mid 80's, "Warrior Charge," featured in the film "Babylon," and my favorite track of their, the wonderful "Back To Africa."While they are not pure reggae anymore, Aswad can not be overlooked as the UK's premier reggae act, and therefore, this collection is a nice way to get to know their style of music."