September 12, 2013

The Mighty Diamonds | Pass The Knowledge

ARTIST: The Mighty Diamonds
TITLE: Pass The Knowledge
LABEL: 17 North Parade
The Mighty Diamonds are one of Jamaica’s legendary vocal groups, still together in their 44th year with the same three original members. This very worthwhile 40-song retrospective touches on many of the high points of their career. They started at the tail-end of the rocksteady era, and their early material is highly soul-influenced: check out disc 1, track 12 (straight outta Philly!) and 1-3 (equal parts soul and roots). During the roots era the Diamonds were a smoother alternative to aggressively militant vocal trios like Culture and Black Uhuru: 2-2 and 2-11 are great examples. They hit the big time in 1981 with “Pass The Kouchie” (2-1; don’t miss their own answer song and this collection’s title track, 2-12). Also of note here: fabulous roots-dub circa 1980 (2-4) and a half-brilliant, half-mystifying cover of the two biggest hits from the musical “Hair” (1-17). Plus all of their Jamaican top-sellers, a handful of dubplates, and much more. Another superb package from VP Records’ archives – keep ‘em coming, please.
TOP TRACKS: Disc 1: 3    12    17    Disc 2: 1    2    4    11    12
ALSO RECOMMENDED: Disc 1: 2    5    8    9    11    16    18    Disc 2: 3    9

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