EASY STAR ALL STARS: “Dub Side of the Moon”

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13-any-dub-you-like1dub-side-of-the-moonCall it harmonic convergence of the psychedelic/stoned variety, but the Easy Star All-Stars song-for-song reggae cover of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon has no business being as good as it is. According to producer Len Oppenheimer, the idea for the album was dreamed up during a stroll through mid-town Manhattan. Oppenheimer brought the concept to life with the reggae collective known as the Easy Star All-Stars, and called in a number of special guests both known (Frankie Paul, The Meditations, and Corey Harris) and unknown (Sluggy Ranks, Dr. Isreal, and in an inspired take on ‘Great Gig In The Sky’, Kirsty Rock). Dark Side Of The Moon is an album of great technical achievement and minute sonic detail, and Dub Side is a worthy tribute in both respects. Jamaican airport ambience is deftly used in ‘On The Run’ while ‘Time’ features cuckoo clocks and ‘Breathe’ uses the sounds of a rastaman pulling a bong hit and coughing. Throughout the album, different styles of Jamaican music are used to great, yet subtle effect. Oppenheimer’s album liner notes explain that “since guitar solos are less than predominant in traditional reggae, David Gilmour’s leads were replaced by horns (’Any Colour You Like’), melodica (’Time Version’), and toasting (’Time’ and ‘Money’).” In nearly every case, the translation is seamless, making this tribute seem as natural as a lunar eclipse. The cd version of Dub Side Of The Moon includes four bonus cuts – extended dub versions that are less faithful to the original album tracks, but illustrate how solid the fundamental idea of marrying Floyd and reggae really is. Not to be outdone, the LP release of this album comes in sweet, rasta-themed colored vinyl. And finally, yes, this album is so tight that it too syncs up with Wizard Of Oz – instructions can be found in the cd liner notes.

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One Response to “EASY STAR ALL STARS: “Dub Side of the Moon””

  1. This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

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