Album: Various Artists, Bass Culture Vols 1-4 (Nascente)


The imminent 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence has prompted a rash of exhaustive reggae retrospectives, the best being this 4 x 2CD series.

Its individual volumes deal with the music's ska and rock-steady origins, early reggae, the 70s heyday of roots, dub and toasters, and the birth of dancehall. The third set, When Reggae Was King, is the standout, drawing on infectious tracks by the likes of Joe Higgs, Big Youth, Max Romeo and Burning Spear to illustrate the diversity with which artists reacted to the form's new-found maturity, and to its proliferation in the wider world. 

Download: Caution; Jaro; Rebirth; Dem A Come; Dub Organiser