Various Artists

Ultimate 16: Ultimate Reggae Rocks

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A compilation of reggae covers of rock standards, this Ultimate 16 anthology is definitely interesting, but in the end it's a bit disorienting to hear songs like the Rolling Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," covered here by the Heptones, done up in a bubbling roots reggae version with its trademark guitar riff excised, or another Stones tune, "Start Me Up," which is nasty and ominous in its original incarnation, transformed into an almost joyous gospel-reggae romp by Toots & the Maytals. In the end, two things you probably already knew are proven out, namely that rock songs are quite pliable and that reggae rhythms can be applied to anything under the sun. Fun for a while, this disc really is ultimately more odd than it is memorable, and it's difficult to imagine anyone going back to it very many times.

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