Blakk Wi Blak K K
I have this only because of Great Queens of Africa, which I heard on a cool Saturday reggae program on the University of Washingtons KUOW radio station in the early 1990s. I liked the tone and the groove, although it was oddly antiseptically electronic given its subject matter and genesis, so I hunted down a copy of the CD years later when I could afford to build a musical library.
While I still do like that track, the rest of the album is to me the musical/sociological equivalent of an eyesore or ones mad Uncle Max whom everyone tries to ignore just to be polite. Great Queens of Africa works because its musical, it has singing and a song structure, whereas the bulk of this album is Mutabarukas pontificating pronouncements of what are presumed to be undeniable facts. Preaching is heavy even when youre on the same page as a preachy person, and as Im not in his camp I leave the rest of the album aloneIve played it, many times, but my reaction is always the same: alienated by the Jamaican insularity, bored by the one-note tedium of the declamatory style, unmoved by the machine-generated instrumental basis, and quite uncomfortable with what seems to be a racist undertone at times.
Comments © 2006 Mark Ellis Walker, except as noted, and no claim is made to the images and quoted lyrics.