Here Come The Warm Dreads

Coming out hot on the heels of his latest album Rainford, recorded with dub supremo Adrian Sherwood, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry has now put out a dub version of that album, with some new Scratch- Sherwood tracks, titled Heavy Rain. If all that weren’t enough the new album has a collaboration with Brian Eno, Here Come The Warm Dreads, a dubbed out Eno version of the track Makumba Rock. And that is your Friday soundtrack and earworm ordered and booked.

Rainford

May must be a prime time for throwing your art out into the world, this is the fourth new music post in less than a week here. Today’s new music alert is from Lee Scratch Perry who has an album out at the end of the month, recorded with Adrian Sherwood at the controls. Rainford is a personal, autobiographical record recorded in bursts over two years in London, Jamaica and Brazil. Sherwood describes it as the strongest set of Scratch songs for years and set out with the intention of doing for the Upsetter what Rick Rubin did for Johnny Cash. The lead single Let It Rain goes some way to fulfilling those aims, catchy as you like and sounding like a song for the summer. The album can be pre-ordered at Bandcamp.

Scratch is on Twitter. On Sunday he Tweeted ‘ALTHOUGH WE’RE IN THE END TIMES, WE ARE NOT AT THE END OF THE TIME. BE CAREFUL WHO YOU LISTEN TO.
SATAN IS RAGING NOW BECAUSE HE KNOWS THE TIME IS SHORT DON’T LISTEN TO GLOOM AND DOOM. IT IS TRICKERY DESIGNED TO DRAG YOU DOWN. WE SHOULD BE REJOICING AT WHAT GOD IS BRINGING FOTH! And there’s plenty more where that came from.

Khasha Macka

More from the magic fingers and ears of Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry. His Black Ark Studio had a four track tape recorder. Max Romeo said Scratch had another eight tracks running in his head. Black Board Jungle came out in 1973, recorded with The Upsetters, is a contender for first dub album, separating the instruments with drums and bass in the left channel and guitars and horns largely in the right. This song, Khasha Macka (a reworking of Prince Django’s Hot Tip) is a wonderful trip. Check the splashy cymbals and the part at three minutes where he drops everything out to foreground the bass.

Khasha Macka 

Rockin’ In The Back Yard

Back to work today after a fortnight off, so it’s a deep breath, time to gird one’s loins and get back into it. Reorganising my records recently led to me discovering various things I’d forgotten I had including a 7″ of Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry’s 1978 song Roast Fish And Cornbread, four minutes which on their own mark Scratch out as some kind of musical genius. The son opens with him singing ‘clip clop, cloppity cloppity cloppity cloppity high’ as the offbeat riddim rides in, a cow’s mooing utilised as part of the rhythm and Scratch further singing to his own beat- ‘dreadnought and peanut, roast fish and cornbread… skanking in the backyard’.

Roast Fish And Cornbread

Black Vest

I’m trying to think of a situation that wouldn’t be improved by sticking some Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry on. Not coming up with much.

Black Vest is off 1976’s Super Ape album, ten dub cuts made with The Upsetters at The Black Ark. This song is particularly good, a bubbling bassline from Boris Gardiner and some deliciously delayed horns.

Black Vest

River Stone

This muddy stream is in the woods in Sale, a dirty tributary that I’m guessing ends up in the Mersey. Musically, today I offer you a delightfully strange song and its dub, both from the magic hands of Lee Perry and Zap Pow, recorded at Perry’s Black Ark at some point in the 1970s (1977 I think). The original track is slowly wonky, vocal harmonies and horns and a lilting rhythm. The dub, River Stone, is dubbier and less strange, strangely. A river that smells of sweet herbs and drifts towards the sea.

All The Peacemakers

I heard this out over the weekend, played over a decent sized PA, and it sounded even better than it usually does- what’s more after checking I’m amazed that in the last five years and eight months I’ve been doing this thing I’ve never posted it. Junior Murvin’s Police And Thieves, released in 1977 and produced by Lee Scratch Perry with The Upsetters providing the music, is one of reggae’s truly great tunes. Scratch produced it along with The Heptones’ Party Time and Max Romeo’s War Ina Babylon in a burst of Back Ark inspired creativity. The guitar is lighter than air, the rhythm perfect and Murvin’s falsetto vocal floats over the top while burying its way into your head.

Police And Thieves