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  • In Concert
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In Concert

7 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 9, 1988
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Editorial Reviews

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The poet leads off this November 1984 concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank, England, with an a cappella throw-down, drawing screams with his chilling rendering of an early composition from Dread Beat an' Blood. When the band kicks in for the title poem of that first LP, a flood of reggae tension bursts forth. And it just keeps coming. This double set is the only live recording of one of reggae's finest intelligences, and it's a killer. Linton Kwesi Johnson (a.k.a. LKJ) reveals his scholarly bent in "Intro," his brief greeting to the audience, describing the concert as a reflection of his poetic progress, and modestly stating that after 11 years in the biz, he's still an apprentice. But that's the sole quiet moment. The Dub Band, justly famed for drawing the sounds of the black diaspora into an airtight reggae celebration, is an awesome musical beast here. LKJ's handsome voice--an incisive instrument of rhythm and reason--darts in and out of the beast's charges and manages to remain up front and stage center. --Elena Oumano

1. Five Nights of Bleeding
2. Dread Beat An' Blood
3. Intro.
4. All Wi Doin Is Defendin'
5. It Dread Inna Inglan
6. Man Free
7. Want Fi Goh Rave
8. It Noh Funny
9. Forces Of Victory
10. Independent Intavenshan
11. Reggae Fi Peach
12. Di Black Petty Booshwah
13. New Craas Massahkah
14. Reality Poem
15. Wat About Di Workin Claas?
16. Di Great Insohreckshan
17. Making History

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 9, 1988)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Shanachie
  • ASIN: B000000DW3
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #534,117 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Douglas H. Watts on February 11, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I watched a performance of most of these cuts by Linton Kwesi Johnson (LKJ) with Dennis Bovell and the Dub Band in 1989 at a small club in Portland, Maine; and had the chance to interview Linton Kwesi Johnson just prior to the show. During our pleasant but intense chat, he recommended I read Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Dubois, whom he cited as one of his major influences while growing up.
While the musical form played behind LKJ's lyrics is reggae-based, it is far from the "sunny" island-style reggae. LKJ's songs are explicit and disturbing stories of police beatings, trumped-up arrests, assassinations and firebombings of Jamaican, Haitian and African citizens of Great Britain, where he lives. LKJ does not sing, but speaks in a Jamaican-Black British patois adapted from Jamaican DJ pioneers such as Big Youth, U-Roy and I-Roy. These performances, from a mid 1980s concert in London, are a musical tour de force for Dennis Bovell (bass) and his band, which includes a full horn section, playing their butts off.
This CD captures LKJ and his band at their peak and is an excellent introduction to Linton Kwesi Johnson's recorded works and writing. For those familiar with Bob Marley, if you like the song "War" you will like this. Inspirational, unsettling and essential listening for those who desire far more than audio wallpaper.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Holiday gift giving on March 3, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I bought this on vinyl years ago just for "Wat About Di Working Claas?" and discovered many more great tracks. My favorites are the last 3 tracks - "Wat About Di Working Claas?" goes right into "Di Great Insohreckshan" and then into "Making History." The Dub Band really fires up and delivers an incredible, tight, driving performance. Killer stuff, and socially conscious. Being a white, conservative yuppie I always felt a bit funny blasting this at full volume in my BMW, but it is just too good not to.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By roggreene@aol.com on November 20, 1998
Format: Audio CD
This album is best enjoyed in a dark room with your fanny seated between the speakers. This album will convert even the most conservative of reggae enthusiasts. Your friends will admire your taste and envy your collection. Hide this cd from your friends. This will be listed among the greatest of cult classics.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 14, 2004
Format: Audio CD
First off don't listen to the review posted by Darcey-what an ignorant statement. You obviously don't know anything about the true essence of reggae music. Your negative statement shows how pathetic and attention starved you are, and only turns an individual away from a good artist and a great album. I guess it wasn't pop enough for you. For you true reggae fans who know about good music this album is a must have. The poetic socio-political commentary accompanied by great reggae rhythms is classic. I recommend this album to any positive, intelligent reggae fan. It will make a great addition to your collection.
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