Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry is currently riding high on the release of his Rainford LP - an album that has been widely hailed as a return-to-form for the legendary artist. On this new On-U Sound ‘discoplate’ Rainford highlight ‘Makumba Rock’ gets reworked into an extended disco mix. The results, as one might expect, are barnstorming.
For this new version of ‘Makumba Rock’, Perry and producer/On-U Sound boss Adrian Sherwood slam together the track’s vocal edit and dub. The result is a timeless wedge of soundsystem goodness replete with chunky bass groove, slinky horn playing and delay that spirals off into the cosmos. Perry is on top form up front, his yips and yells at once knitting the tune together and giving ‘Makumba Rock’ a pleasingly anarchic feel.
Flip the record over and you’ll find the exclusive track ‘Heaven And Hell’, a song which acts as the yin to ‘Makumba Rock’s yang. This classic dub-reggae flex sees The Upsetter offering pearls of wisdom atop a melancholy vamp. It’s a sombre and more wary take than the A-side, a vibe which Sherwood accentuates through the grainy fog of noise that occasionally engulfs ‘Heaven And Hell’ as well as some enormous production on the snare.
Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry uses the ‘Makumba Rock’ discoplate as a post-Rainford victory lap. You won’t come across these versions anywhere other than on this record - best move fast then…