Black Uhuru

Black Sounds of Freedom

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Formed in 1974, Black Uhuru had been recording singles exclusively when the trio joined forces with the highly regarded reggae producer Prince Jammy for their debut album, Black Sounds of Freedom (originally released in a different mix and titled Love Crisis). Although not quite in a class with subsequent treasures like 1981's Red and 1982's Chill Out, this engaging date (which Shanachie reissued on CD in 1990) has all of Uhuru's trademarks: haunting themes, addictive grooves, and deeply spiritual lyrics based on the Rastafarian faith. Longtime followers of the group (whose 1977 lineup included Michael Rose, Errol Nelson, and original member Duckie Simpson) will be more than familiar with such heartfelt classics as "I Love King Selassie," "African Love," and "Satan Army Band." These songs point to the fact that in 1977, Uhuru were well on their way to becoming the reggae powerhouse they would be in the '80s.

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