Harder Shade Of Black CD (2010)

Artist: Various

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Product Overview


Label Pressure Sounds Records/ra
SKU 213780372
UPC 689492097127
UPC 14 00689492097127
Format CD
Release Date 2/23/2010
Author Various
Technical Info
Engineer Osbourne "King Tubby" Ruddock; Errol "Errol T" Thompson; Syd Bucknor
Producer Leonard "Santic" Chin
CatalogID 66
Lable Name Pressure Sounds
Released 02/23/2010
Original Release 2010
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code n/a
Length 60m : 54s
Mono/Stereo Stereo
Studio/Live Studio
UPC 00689492097127
Album Notes and Credits
Personnel: Leroy Sibbles, Alvin Reggie Lewis (guitar); Augustus Pablo (melodica, piano, Clavinet, organ); Theophilus Beckford (piano); Ossie Hibbert (organ); Lloyd "Tinleg" Adams, Carlton "Carly" Barrett, Carlton "Santa" Davis (drums).
Liner Note Authors: Steve Barker; Harry Hawke.
Recording information: Harry J Recording Studio, Kingston, Jamaica; Joe Gibbs Recording Studio, Kingston, Jamaica; King Tubby's Recording Studio, Kingston, Jamaica; Randy's Studio, Kingston, Jamaica.
Photographer: Leonard "Santic" Chin.
Arranger: Leonard "Santic" Chin.
While Harder Shade of Black was available on LP for a good long run during the '70s, '80s, and even into the early '90s, it was the excellent Pressure Sounds imprint that finally brought producer Leonard "Santic" Chin's (the nickname is his label's name) album of killer productions from 1973-1975 to compact disc. Their original, Even Harder Shade of Black, issued on disc in 1995, collected most of what's on this album in the sense that it put the big singles and their dubs that made up that album onto a 16-track disc. This version contains that album in fine remastered style -- even the tracks taken from vinyl and acetates sound better than they did on the initial CD -- and some bonus material that is every bit as crucial as the cuts that made Santic a legend with some of the biggest stars in reggae history. Here one will find his first smash, "Pablo in Dub," with Augustus Pablo playing a melody over Santic's trademark inside-out rhythm where the bassline actually precedes the melody. This is heard to great effect on the title track and its dub where Pablo lays out a slippery counter melody in and through the dubbed-out effects on Leroy Sibbles bassline. But Pablo's clavinet ends up ruling the day -- underscored by a sparse, uncredited tenor saxophone part that plays the Beatles "Norwegian Wood" later in the tune -- especially on its dub version. Check Horace Andy's spontaneously cut vocal on "Children of Israel," or Roman Stewart's take on the hymn "Peace in the Valley," for the way Santic could place a vocal at the center of his dub space station mix. Gregory Isaacs' sweet, sexy version of the soul classic "I'll Be Around" opens the set and displays the rhythmic genius of Santic. "Columbo," by Pablo, is one of Chin's freakiest productions; the drums are thin and rickety, and Sibbles' bassline pumps the front end as Pablo's clavinet improvs on the melody, finding a healthy middle between the rhythm tracks, where the echo bleeds so much it overtakes the saxophone fills to signal the verse changes. It sounds like music from many dimensions converging. Another stellar cut is King Tubby with the Santic All-Stars on "One Heavy Duba," where rhythm is pushed so far into the red, everything else feels like a whisper. It bubbles and boils, simmers and splashes all over everything else in the mix. In all, there are 21 cuts on this version, issued in a slipcase with the original cover artwork. The booklet contains liners from the original album, as well as Even Harder Shade of Black's, plus excerpts from three interviews with Chin. For those who bought the LP, this is an excellent update, for those who bought the earlier CD, this is a noticeable improvement, and for those who've never heard it, it's about time. ~ Thom Jurek
Disc 1
1 I'll Be Around - Gregory Isaacs
2 One Thousand Swords - Augustus Pablo
3 Harder Shade of Black - Augustus Pablo
4 Beter Shade of Dub - Dirty Harry/Santic All Stars
5 Peace In the Valley - Roman Stewart
6 Columbo - Augustus Pablo
7 Special Branch - Leonard Santic All Stars/Santic All Stars
8 Pablo In Dub - Augustus Pablo
9 Hell Boat - Santic All Stars
10 Children of Israel - Horace Andy
11 Problems - Horace Andy
12 Lovers Mood - Augustus Pablo
13 Jah Guide - Big Joe
14 Palace of Peace - Santic All Stars
15 Chalice Blaze - Jah Woosh
16 One Heavy Duba - King Tubby/Santic All Stars
17 Yamaha Ride - I-Roy
18 Mexican Rocking - Santic All Stars
19 I Don't Want To Lose You - Paul Whiteman
20 Shouldn't Say No - Jah Woosh
21 Santic Meet King Tubby - King Tubby/Santic All Stars

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