Dillinger's Major and Minor "Magnum Opi" on 1 CD
Joseph E. Odonnell | Burlington, Vermont, USA | 10/07/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"CB200 was a seriously different lp (to these ears) when it first appeared on the scene in 1976. Reggae neophites like myself didn't realize we were listening to "versions" of some of the hottest tunes then tearing up the Ja. dancehalls being "ridden" by the hottest "Deejay" of the moment, Lester Bullocks(a.k.a "Dillinger" or "Rankin' Dillinger".)
Channel One studio, with house band The Revolutionaires-featuring the cream of the crop of Jamaican studio musicians, ruled the airwaves and dancehalls in Jamaica during that time, roughly 1975-77 and producer "Jo Jo" Hoo-kim gave Dillinger free range on his first major label release."CB200" versions a great Gregory Isaacs tune,and sings the praises of the most popular motorcycle on the island. "No Chuck It", with it's dramatic intro "Jamaica, land of wood and water, now becomes motor vehicule and manslaughter" while a mysterious,almost oriental voice in the background wails "Bad man, come, badman go..."(the singer was the uncredited-on the original release-Rod Taylor,) was and is my favorite tune on the lp.
The fantastic groove and playful interplay between Dillinger and another dj on "Cokane in my Brain" almost makes one forget the message of the rap, who can forget the terrible waves of destruction that cocaine and crack has inflicted on Jamaica (and America)from that time to this? I skip this one when I listen to the CD.
The rest of "CB200" versions tunes by the Mighty Diamonds, Leroy Sibbles (of Heptones fame),and other hit-makers of the era.
The second half of the disc presents his Island label follow-up, "Bionic Dread". Again versioning hits by the Diamonds, Bob Andy, the Wailing Souls and others, this lp at the time was disappointing in comparison to it's predecessor.The raps did not seem nearly as inventive or innovative. Time has mellowed my opinion, after hearing this pristine re-issue for the first time in over twenty years, I can appreciate things I didn't when the lp first was released.
In any case, the entire re-issue is a triumph, crisp digital sound, crackling tunes, and splendid packaging (the lp's cover art is reproduced inside the CD tri-fold.)
All-in-all, a very enjoyable limited edition from Hip-o Select/Island.
Snag it (if you can)-and, you kids out there, listen to where "rap" came from!