Last year Reggae Archive Records put out the compilation The Midlands Roots Explosion, a critically acclaimed set uncovering reggae from the British Midlands. Now another volume in the series has been released.
The Midlands Roots Explosion Volume Two collects more of the same and offers an equally strong selection of unreleased cuts, scarce gems and readily available material. The collection shines light on some of UK’s finest, yet most overlooked, singers and bands showcasing themes of struggle, resistance, justice and equality.
Five of the 15 tracks are from bands making their debut in the series and it starts off just as its predecessor with Steel Pulse. Their rocking Bun Dem was originally released in 1977 and is a slice of classic British roots deserving far wider attention than the original 7″ has received.
Another strong cut is Musical Youth’s pulsating General. It certainly shows that this outfit was far more militant than their monster hit Pass the Dutchie.
This is British roots reggae at its roughest and fines. Luckily it’s Reggae Archive Records intent to put out enough volumes to properly document the stories of the bands, singers, musicians and labels in the Midlands. So stay tuned – more to come.